Blog Student stories Carrie’s story
My path, my way: Carrie's storyMy path, my way: Carrie's story

Carrie’s story

My name is Carrie and I’m from China.

In 2017, I came to London to study a pathway course so that I could progress to a master’s degree in International Relations at the University of Westminster.

I have now graduated and I want to share my story with you.

Dreaming of the future

When I was little, my uncle used to tell me that my future would be as big as my heart, as big as I could imagine. I carried that thought with me throughout my childhood.

Looking back, I remember I used to sit at my grandpa’s desk and think a lot, daydream a lot. I would think about how big the world is, how small we are, and I would dream that someday I could visit all of those places I’d heard about.

Studying abroad would be the first step to achieving my dream.

Starting a new chapter

I remember arriving in the UK for my pathway course like it was yesterday.

It was the middle of the night and I couldn’t see through the car window clearly, but I had been to the UK before and I could smell the familiar scent of the trees on the side of the road as I joked around with the driver who was taking me to my accommodation. I was so happy to have finally arrived.

When I started my pathway course, I felt a bit overwhelmed by the deadlines, but I also felt welcomed by everyone at the College, and I was excited to be starting a new chapter of my life in a different part of the world.

Enjoying student life in London

I was never a good student. I never got scholarships from any education institution, I never even liked writing, and I never knew how to write properly. But that was before I came to London, before I came to Kaplan, and before I discovered how to enjoy student life.

After spending a year studying a Pre-Master’s course at Kaplan International College (KIC) London, things changed. I became a good student, and I even got my first scholarship!

I also became a Kaplan Student Ambassador, which meant I could share my study abroad experience with other international students through my vlogs, and open myself up to lots of new opportunities.

To be honest, I could not have done my master’s degree without studying a pathway course first. My experience at KIC London was so rewarding because it prepared me academically and personally: it gave me a global study experience, it helped me make international friends, and it allowed me to study my dream subject at university.

I’m really happy that I made the decision to study my Pre-Master’s course with Kaplan.

Overcoming challenges

University life in the UK requires lots of reading and academic writing. As a non-native speaker, I sometimes found it quite challenging to finish the reading list on time and to debate in class.

It can be hard to present to classmates whose first language is English, but in the end, I usually enjoyed the challenge and those moments even became some of my favourites!

The best thing about my experience was that I was lucky enough to meet brilliant teachers and friends who believed in me and gave me opportunities to learn. I’ve learnt how to be a global citizen in an international community, how cultures are so rich and diverse, and how much we can learn from one another.

The future

I am so happy and proud to be a University of Westminster graduate. In the future, I see myself working internationally and using the skills I’ve learned to achieve my dreams. My study abroad experience is definitely what I needed to help me on my path — it truly opened up my world.

Studying abroad is not only about studying. It’s an adventure. It’s about putting your words into action and going on an unforgettable journey.

Discover more

Dariga UBIC student posing on campus

My experience studying at the University of Bristol as an international student 

What's it like to study at the University of Bristol as an international student?

A student and Eid Al-Fitr decorations

Celebrating Eid al-Fitr abroad as an international student 

Hania from Egypt on celebrating Eid al-Fitr while studying abroad.

Desert Botanical Garden in Arizona

Mehriban’s top 6 places to visit in Phoenix on a budget   

Mehriban gives her top 6 things to do in Arizona on a budget.