Sometimes it catches you, a book, an author, his or her view of various things.
I love books that enrich my perspective or increase my level of understanding. The more you learn, read and think your way into different topics, the more you realize how little you actually know. Furthermore there are books on almost every topic, its incredible!
From the application of algorithms to the philosophy of a virtuous life, how to short stocks on the financial markets, how to eat properly according to your blood group, there are dozens of sometimes contradictory treatises on everything. But exactly in this contradiction emerges the germ for one’s own thinking, for the explorative discovery of one’s interests, for the expansion of one’s own horizon, for picking out the right piece of the puzzle fitting into YOUR life.
The work that wasn’t revision during the holidays
During the Easter holidays, aside from catching up with friends, going home for a few weeks, and of course revision, I had some time to do some other cool stuff in and around the college and even got paid for some of it!
A couple of weeks before Easter break, I attended a careers talk in the maths department which was all about how to approach companies in search of jobs and internships but also advertising the services we have access to as students at Imperial, such as CV checking. One such service that was advertised was the First year work shadowing scheme.
Many students are tired of the renowned library cafe and the free baked potatoes you can get with yoyo points. However, there’s plenty of options nearby that will definitely satisfy the most innate hunger.
- Bosphorus Kebab: The most amazing kebabs in the world for a cheap price too! (6 – 8 pounds per meal)
- Go(Vietnamese): 8 pounds for the lunch deal. Best things are the chargrilled lemongrass chicken or the curry
- Dozo(Japanese): Usually quite full, but the lunch deals range from (8-10 pounds)
- Pret – sandwiches, hot-food ( 4- 7 pounds)
- Wasabi – (6 – 9 pounds)
- Honest burgers: Fries are amazing ( 8-12 pounds) – simply one of the best burgers
- Oriental canteen(Asian): (6 – 10 pounds) – south-east Asian cuisine
- Jia(Chinese): (10-12 pounds) – this one has dumplings and stuff
Usually, for lunch, it’s either Go or Dozo.
Just thought I would share this tip that’s been saving me 40 pounds – checkout meerkat movies.
It requires you to buy insurance from compare the market.com (Google it/checkout a guide) but the caveat is that you can actually buy the cheapest insurance (roughly 1 pound) – 1 day in the UK without cars. There’s plenty of guides out there and I’d suggest you check them out. Its completely legal and free, and you may have seen it in cinemas anyway.
It works for the popular cinemas (tried and tested personally) such as VUE, Odeon, Cineworld, etc, and for that 1 pound you’ll get 2 tickets for the price of 1 (usually comes around to 5 pounds each person for a standard 2D).
Most people have an incredible facebook account. 500+ friends, tons of photos and videos. However, I’ve stopped using Facebook as a social media platform – there are many reasons why but I won’t go into them here. That said, Facebook is definitely good for communicating with everyone, but beyond I just feel aimlessly scrolling through the posts on Facebook just isn’t healthy.
Instead, I’ve started using LinkedIn and have never looked back since. Students are worried about getting internships. Most of us are anyway. Do not underestimate the power of LinkedIn here. I’ve gotten a fully fledged summer internship at one the largest banks in the world through a simple message from a recruiter, and almost 20 messages flooding my inbox throughout the year.
You may have seen a company called TeachFirst around Imperial during the year. They are a charity that helps schools combat educational inequality due to different backgrounds, (i.e. children from homes with lesser financial background). So why am I talking about them?
For students, they offer 2 programs, an insight program and a graduate scheme. Last April, I got into their insight scheme which consisted of 2 weeks:
- One week training
- One week placement in a school
This was, without doubt, one of the greatest experiences of my life. I understand that many at Imperial/elsewhere look down upon teaching, but hear me out.
For many of us international students, coming overseas is definitely a daunting experience – leaving all you’ve known and loved only to arrive somewhere you know nothing of. Compounded by the fact that we are apparently adults because we have graduated high school, the sense of protection and belonging is no longer there. We are all very much on our own.
Personally, I was very lost when starting the first year at university – arriving at a new place knowing no one. However, since then I’ve grown incredibly through friendships, failures and successes. I’ve become the president of the table tennis club, managed to secure some internships and met my girlfriend in the testosterone-filled world that is Imperial.
This is how I’ve been wasting my time.
As the holidays came to a start- my initial mindset was, “Oh, I’ve got looaaddss of time. I definitely deserve a break. One more season of this show on Netflix won’t hurt.” It must have slipped my mind that the exam on the day I go back is not a mock. Now that I’m about 70% through my Easter/Spring break, I am filled with regret and drowning in revision. :’)
- Watching a season of Hell’s Kitchen
The first thing I did was binge watch as soon as the term ended. Personally a big Gordon Ramsay fan, even though he’s not a believer in Vegetarianism/Veganism cries.
In my post about affording London prices I suggested bringing lunches to work, just to save money. No matter how busy I am, I do it most days, thanks to a collection of delicious and ridiculously quick recipes I collected (let me know if you’d like me to post them!). However, sometimes I treat myself to a lunch at Imperial. Where do I go?
At South Kensington campus we have a big choice of catering outlets that serve everything from sandwiches and salads to Japanese and Indian. About 11am they post the menu of the day, which helps to make an informed choice (and procrastinate from work for a few minutes).