Mohamed Jama (Accounting Management student at the University of Greenwich)
“There are obvious differences between education in the UK and in Somalia my home country. Teachers in the UK are more lenient and understanding with students, especially if the students are going through difficult times, there are no such things as extenuating circumstances back home. It’s either you hand in your work when due or you fail. However, I miss the strictness and discipline in Somalia, here teachers are too soft and lenient and don’t always push students to their limits. Sometimes I think that I could have achieved better grades if I was studying in Somalia because you are made to work harder, and you also compete with your classmates for the first position. I plan to settle in the UK when I graduate, although I will maintain links with my home country and help out in any way I can”.
Mary Onishile (Business Studies student at Newvic)
“I don’t miss studying in Nigeria, and really value UK education, there are abundant resources such as computers and books, the teachers are always here unlike back in Nigeria where lecturers were always going on strike. This is a big opportunity for me to achieve my goals in life, in the UK students can work and study at the same time, whereas in Nigeria, you will be dependent on family and friends for financial support. I’m not planning to go back after graduation, I intend to settle here in the UK, until maybe when I become a pensioner, and then I can retire back to Nigeria”.
Carlos Goncalves (Accounting student at Middlesex University)
“I appreciate UK education because of the ready availability of resources; you have internet access round the clock to help you in your research work. Also the libraries are well stocked. There is really no reason for not doing well and achieving top grades here. You won’t believe what a difference it makes to have uninterrupted power supply incase you want to study at night, without having to resort to candles and lamps. This may sound funny but such little things have really made a difference for me. I miss the African atmosphere though, the spirit of togetherness and so on, people back home are friendlier but then, something has to be sacrificed. I will encourage other people who plan to come to the UK to study to do so; I really see more opportunities here, as one can get a job on graduation. I plan to live here after graduating but would hope to have business relations with Angola, my home country”.
Delfina Antonio (A level student at Newvic)
“I am particularly happy with the opportunities for disabled students, the government and teachers in the UK try as much as possible to accommodate their needs. In Angola, many disabled students studying in the UK would have probably dropped out and classified as illiterates. I also value government’s grants to students aimed at encouraging and supporting them. The UK government understands that young people are the future and so provides them with career guidance, and adequate resources. I do have problems though with the syllabus, especially the A level law syllabus because it is constantly changing, and students have to struggle to play catch-up all the time. I plan to go back to Angola someday, but not in the immediate future, when I do go back, it would be to do some charity work, where I can volunteer my skills. “
Emmanuel Osei-Tutu (Business studies student at London Metropolitan University)
Studying in the UK has its positive and negative sides. On the positive side, the teachers are more helpful, probably because they also need the students to pass in order to retain their jobs. There are also the availability of computers, and technology which are largely lacking in Ghana and in other African countries.
On the negative side, the UK society suffers from moral decay; young people could easily get into trouble here by associating with bad friends. There is not enough parental control here, children and other young people are too independent, this is not so good. In this regard, I still prefer the African discipline system where the whole community watches out for each other. Also, feedback from teachers here can sometimes be demoralizing and can make students lose confidence. I am afraid in a way because there are no longer guaranteed job opportunities in the UK as we had thought when we came, especially with the increase in the number of immigrants and also the influx of EU citizens. My advice to other African students especially from Ghana my home country is to make plans of returning after graduating. After graduating, I plan to work for some time, save some money and set up a business which will take me back and forth to Ghana.