When I chose to study MA in Film and Television, that was the first time I came to a new country, England and stayed at the queen of its cities: London.
This phase of my life consisted of four parts:
Save, save, save
London is not really a students’ city. Oh dear it’s costly! But then you’ll have to find out the tricks to survive it. Four things which were proved important for me:
- Choose your accommodation wisely. If you can manage to live outside central London, GO FOR IT! It’s bearable once you move away from Zone 1 and 2.
- Get a student’s travel card for subway and/or rail; they give you 30% discount on the weekly and monthly fares.
- Try cooking whenever you are not very busy with assignments. Its healthier and definitely saves your pocket. In fact, if possible make coffee by yourself in the morning and carry it in a flask-cup, rather than buying it from the cafe outside. It’s hard at first but later I was quite used to it. I even managed to make breakfast before I ran for the class! HUGE achievement, eh?
- Try to work part-time (for Tier-4 students, 20 hours per week), it’ll provide you money to travel around during the summer and Christmas. UK is very beautiful, don’t miss the chance.
Dive in the knowledge resource
My Uni is really renowned for its Faculty of Media, Arts and Design. Often the BA Film students pick up the students’ Academy Award, or a professor gets nominated for the Oscars and grabs the BAFTA for best documentary.
As for the theory-based MA, it was less field-work, but quality-study. Our one class-duration was of three hours. THREE HOURS. And still they were quite interesting and left places for discussions. The professors are knowledgeable.. they handed and referred to us loads of reading materials which were proved invaluable during the assignments. Our course leader was always available over email and sometimes after class to answer our doubts.
I believe our domain itself is interesting — who doesn’t love film and TV? But the professors made the academic modules even more attractive with their passionate approach of teaching, which I believe is the most important aspect of any field of study.
As all the Masters courses in the UK is of one year, initially I was scared that time will be short, so many modules will be staring at me, assignments will be quite a load on my shoulder and I won’t have time to breathe! But how happy I was to find that I was wrong! I realized that you can always have time for everything if you just give a little effort to plan beforehand.
Have fun at the campus
Call your boyfriend/girlfriend frequently if they are away, video chat with your parents – it’s a must! But don’t miss out the campus life.
My campus was at Zone 4 of London, a peaceful lush green campus with an awesome Forum or central hall. The University residence halls are fun to stay. Often students have birthdays celebrated at the rooms or have a little party at the kitchen; people play ball in the field or arrange yummy potluck lunch while busking in the sun. The hangouts in the weekends in a quiet riverside bar are amazing!
Remember that your laptop, phone and Internet will stay with you, but these moments will pass before you know it. Make the most out of it.
I tried to save a bit and travelled around London and some other places in Europe. I went to some loveliest places I believe I’ll ever go. Those include Isle of Man, Paris, Amsterdam, French Riviera and Barcelona! But wait-for-it… I’ll tell you about those great adventures in some other post.
Looking back now, I am pretty much missing my MA days.