President of the Arab Society and international student
Studying abroad is one of the best experiences one can have and ask for, nothing worth trading for.
My name is Noureldin Adib, studying Business BSc at the University of Exeter on the Penryn Campus. Coming to Penryn was, and still is, very interesting, especially as I had never heard of it before or thought of going there; it was a shocker to me to see what I saw on this campus and area. I am an Egyptian who lives in the capital that consists of 12 million people, compared to Penryn, which consists of a couple of thousand people. At the beginning, I did not know if it was the right decision or what the hell I was doing, and many of my close friends were said I’m crazy to go somewhere that far away from London or any major city in England; but I always said: “it’s probably not that bad, as I’m studying at one of the most prestigious business schools in the UK. How bad can it be?”
The journey, or experience, as many may say, started on my train journey from Paddington to Truro, and finally arriving on Penryn Campus. This was a new challenge, chapter, and, for the first time, I genuinely felt happy and at ease. The thing that surprised me was how friendly the people are, the nice weather, and the mix of cultures on campus. I was always learning something new every day about the area and people, which kept amazing me every day. I started developing my group of friends through my course and the Freshers events that the Students’ Union provided. I know it’s sometimes very stressful for many to meet new people, especially if the first time you meet them is on a night out. I met my coursemates through a group chat on Facebook and later met them all in one of the first Freshers events.
Living as an international student, you may think a place like Penryn has very little to offer but on the contrary, I know what you think cause I was in your shoes. This place is a paradise compared to many places in the UK. It all comes down to how you manage your time between studying and socialising and making sure you get the best experience in your three years; everyone’s university experience is different. The campus also facilitates a lot of international aid, which is always in reach whenever needed. Moreover, there are numerous societies on campus, which I didn’t get involved in until the second year, but there is something for everyone, whether it's surfing, diving, politics, hip-hop, Hispanic, Asian or Arab society, you will find something that suits you. With that in mind, you have a perk that many universities don’t have, you are a 15-minute bus ride to the beach, where you can swim, paddleboard, and, if you don’t like what’s on campus, there is always room for innovation. You can start your society or business; I started my own society: “Arab Society”.
I have lived all around the UK but nothing beats living in Penryn and Cornwall. It’s an experience that I recommend many to try. Finally, you live with and meet people from all around the world, nothing better to grow your networks and become multi-cultured. I can assure you that this experience is one that I will never forget and Penryn/Falmouth will always have a place in my heart.