Tell us about the process applying for the Chevening scholarship? Was it a difficult process?
The Chevening application process is a one year long application that involves passing several stages of the interview process. The process is a very fair process which is based on how an applicant is able to present his/her leadership qualities at each stage of the interview process. The uniqueness of what leadership qualities you have determines the success of the application. My simple advice to would be Cheveners is that be yourself, write your potential leadership stories in your own way and be very articulate of what you want to achieve in your career plans.
Why did you choose to study at USW?
My decision to choose USW was done after a thorough search and comparison with other UK universities. In my comparison of universities offering the same programme, USW was the best university from the lot in terms of having better rankings on the qualities I was looking for. USW was in the top ten of all UK universities in the rankings for best student support, best courses & lecturers and best university facilities.
What has been the highlight of your time at USW so far?
Life at USW has been absolutely fantastic! The quality of education here is superb; very knowledgeable professors, state-of the art library and a mixture of international students from all over the world makes the learning environment so diverse and you got to share experiences. Beside the academic life, the college offers sports and extra-curricular activities at the modest USW Sports Centre. After a busy academic day, I always work out at the campus’s well equipped gym and spend part of my weekend taking my golf lessons offered by the university’s sports training department.
What do you think of life in Wales generally?
I have fallen in love with Wales!!The Welsh people are so nice, friendly and very welcoming. In terms of expenses I think I can say Wales is one of the cheapest place to stay in the UK, very suitable for students! About the weather, I have learnt to always keep myself warm and not to forget carrying an umbrella as the weather is very dynamic. For those who love sight-seeing like me, Wales has a lot of sites to offer from the castles (at Cardiff and Caerphilly), beach side at Barry Island to mountain climbing at Brecon Mountains.
What do you think of the course/lecturers/facilities?
My MSc Engineering Management course has been well structured with a well balanced mix of lectures, assistive tutorials and industrial visits. The lecturers are very knowledgeable with some of them being professors and leading practitioners in their respective fields. The learning facilities from the lecture rooms to the library is fitted with state of the art equipment so as to make the environment conducive to the learner.
Where do you live? Do you like living there?
I live in a private shared accommodation with four other international students. The house is 3 minutes walking distance from the Treforest Campus and that’s very convenient to me. The place is so nice with all facilities that allows me to prepare even my own traditional meals, its home away from home!
What do you plan to do when you graduate?
My plans after graduation is to go back to my country and I’m confident that I will get a management position role that will help me translate my UK acquired education and experiences for the development of our Zimbabwean manufacturing companies. With the latest manufacturing and innovation technologies I have learnt here in the UK,I believe I will very useful in the transforming of our manufacturing industries to bridge the gap to match developed standards.
Would you recommend USW to other Chevening scholars?
Absolutely yes, I would like to encourage future Chevening scholars to put USW as their first choice. USW is the biggest university in Wales and being a newly established university, it comes with latest technology and facilities that will make a student experience nice and enjoyable.
How did you find out about the University of South Wales?
I came to learn about the University of South Wales when I was completing my diploma in Malaysia through the partnership office.
Why did you choose to study here?
I became interested to study at the University of South Wales after meeting of team of delegation from the university that came to Malaysia for simulation lab trainings. The way they demonstrated their practical skills in teaching the students was so excellent and very supportive in engaging the students using the simulation lab. I also run a comparison search on the Internet and the University of South Wales was ranked top 10 within the UK for nursing and Wales was recommended to be a beautiful and very peaceful place with a very low cost of living. I then met the marketing team and I remember having a meeting with Ms Sally Fairburn who really gave me a good explanation about the University and at that time I knew that this was the best decision – a decision I’ve never regretted.
Tell us about the course you studied and how you found the lectures?
The course is designed in such a way that is easy to follow and all the information is communicated on Blackboard including the modules and timetable. The course was a mixture of lecturers, tutorials, group work and clinical placements which was all arranged by The University and within the nearby hospitals. The most exciting part of the course was having a variety of lecturers for each module as each lecturer would present a topic of their speciality. Being the only black and African student in my class, I was afraid of racism but everyone was really friendly and treated me with respect.
Tell us a bit more about studying at the University, what was it like?
Joining straight into the second year was a bit of a challenge; understanding many things like the blackboard and other processes and procedures but I felt so supported by my personal tutor Rachel McMillen who was assigned to me at the beginning of my course and there was also a wide range of support from the student advice centre. The University is located very close to the train station, with very good public transport links and not far from main shops and Cardiff city centre. The library is advanced and most times runs 24 hours; there is also an e-library which allows students access from home to get journals. Other than the academic side, The University also offers spiritual support in terms of religion and also there is a variety of sports. In summary, studying here is packaged with strong academic support, spiritual guidance with a variety of church meetings and also sports and other entertainment.
Did you attend the International Welcome Week?
It was indeed very helpful and orienting students to the University and local area. You also get to connect and develop friendships with other new students.
What are the facilities like at the University?
The learning facilities from the lecture rooms to the library is fitted with state of the art equipment so as to make the environment conducive to the learner.
What have you enjoyed the most (Lecture, project, trip, particular moment etc.)?
I enjoyed placements so much because I got to interact with patients and translate theoretical knowledge into practice. My mentors from the hospital were also supportive and encouraging. There was a strong link between the lectures and the practice in the hospital.
What’s the most useful thing you have learnt?
What I have learnt by studying at The University of South Wales is that assignments and exams are not only for one to pass the course and graduate but they are there to encourage students to study and be knowledgeable.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to study in the UK?
The University of South Wales is the best place to study with a high quality of education, student support and wide range of activities other than the academic side of things.
What do you do in your spare time? Have you joined any sports or social clubs?
I am a pastor and in my spare time I was always engaging with church activities and meeting people within the community.
What has University taught you?
The University has taught me about the value of academic knowledge and that one must never cease to learn but continuously learn and improve their skills. What one learns can never be stolen and neither can one inherit knowledge from someone.
What are your aspirations? What are you doing now that you’ve finished your studies?
My dream is to become a specialist respiratory nurse and after successfully completing my course I got a job offer with a local hospital in a respiratory ward and this is where I am currently working.