One year on: Tia recalls her first year at University

Tia Ralhan

Remember Tia? She was the bright, fresh young face on the front of your last supporter magazine – Your Impact.

Thanks to your support, Tia blossomed in our Nottingham Potential Summer School programme – which gives youngsters from disadvantaged backgrounds a chance to try out life at university. We first featured Tia in Your Impact a year ago as she was starting out on her English and German degree. Now flying headlong into her second year, it seemed the perfect time to catch up to talk about University life, her scholarship, friends, grades and ... potential jobs?

“I really enjoyed my first year, it went well and I’m so glad I chose my Joint Honours course because I have the challenge of studying in two subjects” said Tia.

“I’ve got used to learning independently and I very nearly achieved a first. I was so close so getting the top grades is definitely my key goal for this year."

Helping others like myself

Becoming a student ambassador gave Tia the opportunity to do some part-time paid work while getting to know the University. Brimming with enthusiasm, she is also using her experiences to help inspire the next generation of summer school students.

“I‘m now secretary of the summer school committee. I love helping other Year 12 school students come into the University in the same way I did. I can relate to their concerns and help them overcome their worries. I’ve benefitted from the programme personally and know how much fun it is.

“My scholarship was a great help in my first year. Society activities cost money so it helped me get properly involved in University life. It also helped ease the pressure when I needed to find a deposit for my second year house share, while studying for my exams. This year, I’m hoping it will help me plan my study abroad trip to Germany which I’m really excited about”.

Tia Ralhan

Opening the door to the world of work

“I’m also doing an extra module towards getting my Nottingham Advantage Award in the hope of boosting my employability. The University’s national success with employability is one of the reasons I wanted to come here because that’s the main aim after I’ve earned my degree.

“It’s also the reason why I wanted to do English and German because more doors open when you learn another language and there may be greater opportunities for me to travel and possibly work internationally.

“One of the bonuses of coming through the summer school programme was that I was offered a work placement scheme at the Headway charity in Nottingham. It was another brilliant experience and the first time I’ve worked in an office environment.

“I definitely feel more comfortable with University life –  I think it’s going to be a great year”.

A big thank you

Thank you to everyone who gave to our 2016 scholarship appeal over the summer. Thanks to your generosity, over 100 talented students – just like Tia – are now starting their University experience.