LONDON. On 19th of September our big city life started. We all like ‘fell’ into this amazing, huge, lively and on the first sighting a little bit intimidating city. However, almost all fears just disappeared while traveling from the airport to our new home, the Harrow Halls of Residence in Northern London, and getting to know the enormous helpfulness and kindness of the local people. Not even taking the Underground Lines with an oversized case was a challenge (not even for us girls), although there are NO escalators at all. There was always somebody ready to give you a helping hand.
Arriving at our accommodation made our day even better, though Harrow Campus is not even close to the city centre of London. Everybody was willing to help, and already at the check-in the Students Union of the University of Westminster welcomed us with a little welcome box including a British SIM-card, an Energy drink, playing cards, maps of London and mostly important a party timetable for our first week at the University of Westminster.
It was time making us comfortable in our new homes. The rooms are exactly what we expected: small but clean and within everything you need. Most of us German students are sharing there flat with exclusively English or American students, which is pretty good to improve English skills and get to know other cultures.
Soon after this there was an info meeting at the auditorium for new residents, which was quite helpful. The most important information was this: We need to close our bathroom doors when we are taking a shower, otherwise the steam would start the fire alarm. Apparently not everybody joined this meeting, as in the first few days the fire alarm started at a rough guess more than 10 times, usually at night. Another reason for this may have been the countless kitchen parties all around the campus.
Our first week full of partying and sightseeing has gone by so quickly and it was about time to get used to the university life again. The University of Westminster as a whole is huge, while the various campuses are average sized. Our Campus, the Harrow Campus, is specialized in Media, Arts and Design. The studying opportunities are manifold. Unfortunately we Macromedia students are limited to about four modules, which are given by a learning agreement between Macromedia University and Westminster University. Some of us would have loved to do some extra courses to deepen into different areas of interest. At least we have a lot of spare time where we can enjoy our stay in London and do all the activities that the capital of Great Britain and the Students Union offers.
Classes on a whole are part time interesting, but lectors are anxious and cooperative. Nevertheless contents are often familiar or already known especially for media management students. Further there is a lack of business or management modules (which would be more interesting for media manager) due to the emphasis of the Harrow Campus of the University of Westminster on creative studies like media or fashion design, film and radio. For Macromedia students of these areas it was the best choice choosing Westminster University for their semester abroad. The University of Westminster has a great reputation in creative fields, in particular because of the great success of some graduates.
The Students Union and a big range of communities to join is making studying in London and at the University of Westminster even more exciting and different to studying in Germany. Most of us registered for one or several societies, communities or networks. There are so many opportunities to choose: from pole dance, to bible club, to feminists club to gaming community – there was nobody who did not find anything. To conclude, it can be said that everybody of us here is more than happy about the chance to get to know the wonderful city of London, the capital of individuality, cosmopolitanism and creativity.