"My first experience of Stirling was late at night and this meant that I could only see shadowed trees, mountains and the famous Wallace Monument on my arrival into the University campus. However I soon discovered how beautiful the campus actually is. I am from a highly industrial city called Taiyuan which is situated close to Beijing and after coming from such a busy city I appreciated the peaceful and relaxed atmosphere.
"The Foundation Year Programme proved successful for me; both my written English and communication skills greatly improved."
When I started at the University it was as a participant in the new Foundation Year Programme, designed to help international students gain the qualifications needed to enter their main degree course. It also provides an important introduction to subjects such as computing and learning strategies which prove useful throughout university. Fortunately, the Foundation Year Programme proved successful for me; both my written English and communication skills greatly improved. The course allowed me to make friends and helped me to settle into my new home in a supportive environment. Our class included people from South Africa, Iraq and Yemen. In my year, all of the Foundation Year classes were held in Airthrey Castle, a good place to start university life as it has its own community, and is perhaps less intimidating for new students when they begin, especially for those who may have never previously been to the UK. The teaching staff are approachable and keen to help students progress, assisting with both academic and any personal problems that may come up.
I am now a third year Film & Media student. My previous two years have provided me with a solid theoretical background to my course allowing me to gain a better understanding of what I am studying. This semester I have chosen my own modules in the areas I wanted to explore further. As well as my academic work my time is filled playing basketball for the university team, visiting the gym and socialising with friends. I have found Scotland to be both a modern and historic country with lots of things to see and do.
I have enjoyed being immersed in a new and exciting culture and having the opportunity to meet new people, some of whom will be friends for life."