From Ghana to Keele! In conversation with Abena
NCUK was delighted to speak with Abena, an NCUK alumna who studied our International Foundation Year qualification from 2021-2022 before progressing to Keele University to study the BA (Hons) Social Work.
Abena shared information with us about her time studying with NCUK and her experience in moving to the UK and beginning her undergraduate degree at Keele University.
How did you choose to study the NCUK International Foundation Year?
I always wanted to study my tertiary education outside the country (Ghana) and looking at the options that were available, NCUK seemed to be the best and easiest way to get what I wanted.
You decided to study the International Foundation Year at Accra International Study Centre, what was your experience like during this time and what support did you get?
My time at Accra International Study Centre was a fun learning experience because I came with WASSCE knowledge and a theoretical way of studying and learning. Still, with NCUK I gained a new way of learning. The staff were so helpful with my studies and care. NCUK has helped me, especially in creating and presenting PowerPoint slides which I can do well and correctly, as well as with my academic writing in my essays.
In addition, to prepare for my selected degree course, I had a series of interviews, which I had never done before but Accra International Study Centre guided me throughout the entire process. The lectures were also helpful and the teachers were friendly and always ready to help.
Whilst in Ghana, you made several university choices with your firm choice being Keele University. What influenced your choice to study there?
I liked the structure of the social work course and I love sports and nature. I saw that Keele had a beautiful large campus surrounded by countryside and hosted a variety of sports I could engage in. Graduates also had a high job acceptance rate which helped inform my decision.
Since beginning your studies at Keele University, what has the experience been like?
In the beginning, I had a hard time adjusting to everything because I did come in late but over time my lecturers were helpful in guiding me. I was given time to talk to the undergraduate recruitment officer which was really calming as I was able to just talk openly and get everything I was feeling out there which allowed him to help me. Making friends has been tough however by joining sports teams, I’ve been able to meet more people and feel a sense of belonging!
What do you plan to do after university?
I plan to get a job in social work for a couple of years and obviously get a driver’s license and then probably further my education in the psychology aspect, especially with children but I am still deciding on what exactly I will do after my degree.
What are some of your favourite things about living in Keele?
I think being in a small town, especially as an international student, makes you really comfortable exploring the area and the other towns/cities around it. It’s a very peaceful feeling. Shops are not too far away from each other and are just a short bus journey away whilst the train station isn’t busy, making it easy making the journeys to other cities.
(pictured left: Newcastle-under-Lyme, a nearby market town which is a 30-minute bus journey away)
Do you have any advice for current NCUK students/students who want to study abroad?
The coursework might seem a bit time-consuming but, in the end, it is sometimes worth it to reach the next step which for me was to study in a different country. So I will say have patience and take everything seriously and be focused on your goal to study abroad and of course, have fun.
Finally, can you sum up your experience with NCUK?
An unforgettable family experience that vouches for and supports you.
Get there with NCUK!
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