Lalitha's story

Lalitha, an undergraduate BSc Politics and Sociology student from Singapore, shares her experience of settling into unfamiliar territory and how Bristol has helped her thrive.

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'I felt at home right away'

Moving away from home can be a scary process, much more if you are moving to a completely different continent. When I first arrived in Bristol, I hopped into the cab to take me to an unfamiliar residence. The moment I stepped into the car, I was welcomed by the friendly cab driver - he treated me like one of his daughters. I felt at home right away.

The welcome my faculty gave me felt empowering because I felt supported and free to find my calling and accept my passion for the arts; academics was no longer just libraries and essays, it also became about critical thinking, and discussions. I thrived with the academic freedom, and I learnt to find myself in the process.

Learning to live with those from different cultures was like learning outside of a classroom, building connections that are lifelong and valuable. Also, being part of a society is like choosing to be part of a community, you give your part, but you take back so much warmth and happiness.

A continuing journey

I had the surprising but lovely experience of exploring Bristol solo, understanding the world through my eyes, without being taught to see those around me in a fixed way. The city of Bristol helps me continue this creative journey with its museums, shows and street art. This culture has lit a creative spark that influences my day-to-day interactions.

After I graduate, I want to continue finding myself. Studying at Bristol has taught me that the search to find myself is an ongoing process, and I should be free from rigid milestones and menial ideas of success. Success at the university is defined by the level of passion we students put forth in our efforts, and I plan to continue upholding that spirit after graduation.

This is not just going to be me in Bristol, this is now me anywhere.

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