Dickinson College Humanities Program in Norwich

Visit to City College Norwich

February 13, 2010 · 1 Comment

My research is about the experiences of international students when studying in England. I am interested not only in hearing these experiences but also visiting the universities and places where these students spend their time. That is why, a few weeks ago, I arranged a meeting with Carolyn Fitzgerald, the International Student Adviser for City College Norwich. I wanted to ask her basic questions that an international student might have and at the same time have a chance to visit the College.

There are many things that I learnt while reading the CCN website. Firstly, I realized that the word ‘college’ does not have the same meaning in the UK than in America. ‘College’ in the UK constitutes the last two years of schooling, that is, high-school in America. At the same time, institutions such as Oxford and Cambridge University have ‘colleges’, which are constituent schools within the University. At first I panicked, thinking that I had chosen a place that would not help me with my research on international students pursuing an exchange the Higher Education system. Then, I realized that CCN in fact has both ‘Skill Academies’ (Financial Services, Manufacturing, Hospitality, Retail and Creative and Cultural) and Higher Education and foundation courses. Furtheremore, it has a significant number of international students.

City College Norwich is located on Ipswich Road, not far from the city centre. I arrived earlier than the time I was meeting Carolyn because I wanted to wander around the place for a while. The first thing that I could see is how different CCN is from UEA. I was surprised because the campus is much bigger than what I thought. There are many classrooms and the halls were filled with students. I definitely liked visiting CCN because it has a much more different feel than UEA, the same way UEA is very different to Cambridge University, as you will read about on my next post.

The meeting with Carolyn helped me enourmously. I feel most grateful that she gave me some of her time, especially when I am not even a student at CCN. She was very bussy that day. International students stop by her office constantly to ask for her advice on how to cope with student life, visa issues or financial matters, like a student from Ethiopia (I will keep his anonimity), who had a meeting with her right before me, and with who I started talking. Like most of the approximately fifty international students of CCN, this student had family, specifically his father, living in Norwich. This student chose to study at CCN, being much more affordable than UEA. After obtaining a two-year carer worker diploma, he is now pursuing a foundation degree on health studies. The best part is that my informat invited me to events where I will be able to interview other students from Ethiopia, Cambodia, Palestine, China and the Phillipines. Some are currently seeking refuge in England and are sent to Norwich and others from India and Sri Lank are recruited through an agent.

Further information on the experiences of international students and some other information that Carolyn provided me will be on the paper. For the meantime, I wanted to share a glimpse of what other educational institutions in England are like.

Hours: 4

Categories: Azul
Tagged: ,

1 response so far ↓

  •   Karl // Feb 14th 2010 at 08:27

    Sounds like you made some good first contacts. Don’t forget to update the tags with “volunteering”

You must log in to post a comment.