From Malaysia to Plymouth and beyond

Hi all! This is my first blog post in the Plymouth Student Life Blog. I am very excited to be able to let everyone have a glimpse of my life as an international Student in Plymouth. Leaving my home country Malaysia was a huge step for me but I wanted to further my education by starting a Masters degree in Plymouth University, 1000 miles away from home (13 hours flight and 4 hours train to be exact). I am however glad I made this decision, because I can easily say that this was the best decision I have made so far in my life.

I am currently doing my final year of a Masters in Architecture. Choosing University was not an easy task for me. Having to decide on something that dictates the rest of my life, or at least two years of it, was difficult as I had no idea what to expect (I have never been to UK before except to London once at 16). It was a hard decision, but in the end I chose Plymouth. The few main reasons are the ranking for the course that I am doing is in the top 15 for Architecture in the UK and I love the coast a lot, so being able to live near the sea is a dream come true.

I’m sure everyone kind of has an idea of what we learn in Architecture, but if you don’t, it is mainly designing buildings. One question I get ask a lot is do I have to calculate much for my course, and the answer is NO! Architecture is mainly designing, that’s why I choose it (I am not good at Maths). It is an interesting course, it keeps me motivated to design and create different buildings that will (hopefully) change the world.

The main project I am currently working on is to propose an urban design plan for a city in Poland. In non-architect terms I basically have to propose a city design as a solution for the city of Slupsk and Ustka in Poland. After that, we will choose a location in the city to design a building on that space. The interesting thing about my course is that we do live projects. Mayors of the cities get us to go there and discuss about the issues in the hope we can come up with a fresh idea as a solution.

The mayor of both cities, Slupsk and Ustka, got all of us to the city for two weeks at the beginning of October. I love traveling, so this was such an amazing experience for me. We visited the city councils to talk about the problems that both cities have in the urban scape and we even met up with Robert Biedron, for all the polish readers you will know he is a very famous Polish politician. Two weeks is a very long time for just meetings, therefore my course mates also organised trips down to Gdansk, Sopot and many more places around the city. It was truly a fun filled two weeks, where we worked hard and definitely did not forget to play hard. Oh, did I mention we were in the local Slupsk paper?

Stay tuned here to see more updates of my projects and other interesting parts of my life.