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My life after Bellerbys

Posted 11 October 2013
graduate student

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My name is Autumn Hoang and I was an A Level student at Bellerbys College Oxford. Bellerbys was an amazing place for me and I am certain that it is still fabulous for its current students. I had a blast at Bellerbys College; I learned a lot, made friends with many and gained so much more than just a qualification. Sadly, all good things come to an end. When my time at Bellerbys was up, I had to move on. Bellerbys had helped me gain entry to my dream university and now I am continuing on my chosen path with a place to read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Durham University.

My name is Autumn Hoang and I was an A Level student at Bellerbys College Oxford. Bellerbys was an amazing place for me and I am certain that it is still fabulous for its current students. I had a blast at Bellerbys College; I learned a lot, made friends with many and gained so much more than just a qualification. Sadly, all good things come to an end. When my time at Bellerbys was up, I had to move on. Bellerbys had helped me gain entry to my dream university and now I am continuing on my chosen path with a place to read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Durham University.

 


I came to Durham on a bright, crisp September afternoon. University was daunting at first. With no tutors to tell you what to do, no programme manager to chase after your assignment, my life was my responsibility alone and no one else’s. Self-discipline and self-motivation were essential. It was extremely easy to slip up and lose track of your goal. However, what I gained at Bellerbys College helped me so much. My programme managers had talked a lot about the differences between sixth-form colleges and universities.They emphasised that in university no one would pay any heed to whether or not you attend lectures; your professors would not have time to wait for your assignments or move the deadline for your convenience. The talks prepared me mentally for the challenges university life would pose. I improved my organisational skills while I was studying in Oxford, which mattered considerably. I understood from the very beginning of fresher’s week the importance of self-study and self-motivation, which enabled me to stay on track (most of the time, anyway).

 


Bellerbys assisted me not only in academic matters but also in extra-curricular activities and my social life. I learned to overcome culture shock and homesickness, and was able to adapt quickly to the new environment. Before I came to the UK I was quiet and shy. My teachers at Bellerbys encouraged me to speak up and helped me get accustomed to the Western educational system, which was drastically different from what I had been used to. I became more confident in myself and my abilities. I broke out of myself, made friends much more easily. I decided to sign up for societies and clubs that I had never thought I would have the courage to pursue. Despite being horribly bad a sports, I signed up for netball. I found out at the end of the year that I was definitely not cut out for sports that required eye-hand combination. But if I hadn’t done it in the first place, I would never know it for sure and would spend my life wondering if I had a chance at netball. My first year went by like a flash. In the summer, I volunteered with Oxfam to be a steward at Glastonbury all by myslef. I would not have done that were I still the shy girl with a sheltered life. But three years in the UK had certainly given me more courage and nerve. I now dare to dream bigger and actually take actions to chase my dream. I undertook a work placement in marketing and social media in the summer as I wanted to gain experience and learn more about the advertising and marketing sector.

I owe all the wonderful teachers I had at Bellerbys College a debt of gratitude. Bellerbys is a fantastic first step on my ladder to success.

Autumn Hoang

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