Tag Archives: London

International students tour London’s legal landmarks

Birkbeck’s international students took a well-earned break from their studies to tour the iconic sites of London’s legal history.

On 16 March, Birkbeck’s international students braved a wet and windy Wednesday to explore the legal heart of London.

From The Old Bailey, to the chapels and squares of Lincolns Inn, this walking tour gave our students an insight into London’s most iconic legal landmarks.

Beginning at St. Paul’s, this tour showcased archetypal London architecture, with stories of pubs, writers and barristers along the way.

Valeria Giannoli, an Italian MSc Management student, said: “The walking tour is a fantastic way to socialise and learn something new at the same time. We had a lot of fun while walking around the historic legal buildings of London. Tim Kidd explained to us the past and the present history of the most important courts in London (e.g. Central Criminal Court, Wine Office Court, Central London County Court) and the role of the most notable people in the legal framework of the UK. Will, responsible to plan this event, is extremely kind and helpful should you have any questions or concerns (he won’t let you get lost in the city while you are looking for the meeting point 😉). That one was my first walking tour and I am so glad that I dedicated a little bit of my time to learning something more about this gorgeous city as well as meeting some beautiful people from our University! I hope more people will be able to join this events, you don’t want to miss these out!”

Yasaman Samadian, an Iranian BSc Data Science and Computing student, said: “This walking tour with Mr Tim Kidd was a brilliant experience to learn about legal history of London, to have a different point of view about old mysterious buildings and to consider the meaning and philosophy behind those valuable status and signs. I would love to participate in any upcoming events like that in the future, as it’s a nice adventure between busy hours of study and work”.

We would like to thank the very knowledgeable Tim Kidd for leading this tour.

 

Share

BEI Welcomes International University of Catalonia to Experience Birkbeck Life

Will Richards from BEI’s international team reflects on a recent visit from delegates of the International University of Catalonia – complete with cream tea and Friday fish and chips!

On the week of 1 March, Birkbeck’s School of Business, Economics and Informatics was delighted to host a visiting delegation of prospective partnership students from Spain.

Birkbeck’s close relationship with the International University of Catalonia (UIC) brought six visiting students to the heart of Bloomsbury, with Andrea Williams and Will Richards from BEI’s international team on hand to greet them. Joining them was Nicoletta Occhiocupo and Marta Segura Vacarisas, of the university’s faculty.

Visitors attended sample lectures on Financial Economics by Dr Ken Hori and Marketing by Dr Nick Pronger and were given a campus tour. Although an emphasis was placed on the academic opportunities at Birkbeck, there was an opportunity for students to enjoy some classic Friday fish and chips and even a cream tea at the British Museum!UIC delegates enjoying afternoon tea at the British Museum.Birkbeck’s partnership with the International University of Catalonia allows UIC students to achieve a dual-degree, with an academic year spent in London.

This experience allows our partnership students to experience British culture in our great city, whilst also allowing them to achieve a prestigious University of London degree.UIC delegates standing outside the Marquis Cornwallis pub.In October 2022, we look forward to welcoming our second – and largest-ever – cohort of UIC partnership students. With Birkbeck’s ever-expanding international student community, we look forward to developing our special partnerships.

Further Information

 

Share

We’re not “made out of sugar”

A student from Brazil recently shared that in her country, people who are reluctant to go out in the rain are teased with the question, ‘Are you made out of sugar?’ Last week’s day-out to beautiful and historic Greenwich proved that while they are certainly sweet people, Birkbeck’s international students are not ‘made out of sugar’, willing to brave the pouring rain. Read this account of the day.

International students visiting Greenwich

Our day began early morning at Westminster Pier, to take the Thames Clipper boat service to Greenwich. On arrival, despite the weather, students were keen to put up their umbrellas and enjoy the sights with tour guide Andrew to discover the history and stories behind this fascinating part of London.

In Greenwich Park, Andrew led the group up the hill to see the famous Royal Observatory. Before ascending, commenting on the grey skies and rain, he joked, “Who knows?  Maybe there’s bright sunshine at the top!”

On arrival, a low grey mist obscured the usually impressive views. Even the tall buildings of the nearby Docklands were hidden. However, within a few minutes the mist cleared, the sun shone and students were folding up umbrellas and reaching for sunglasses. Everyone enjoyed the stunning views of London. “What I said earlier was a joke!” laughed Andrew.

International students standing by the Greenwich observatoyTo round off the tour, we visited the famous Goddard’s Pie & Mash shop, where students enjoyed this hearty and delicious traditional London food.

International students at a pie and mash shopAndrew explained that Pie & Mash predates Fish & Chips as a traditional British dish, and that Goddard’s has been a family-run Greenwich favourite for over 130 years.

International students on the tour of GreenwichStudents ended their day in Greenwich full-up, maybe a bit wet, but also happy and, we hope, with some new friends. Sweet!

 

Share

Life as an Indian scholar in London

MA Journalism student Vimal found studying in London a totally immersive experience, so much so he wrote a book about it. Here, he uncovers his own story and shares perspectives on the differences between the media in the UK and India, with a personal take on the COVID-19 pandemic news coverage. This is his #BBKStory.

Vimal Chander Joshi

In 2020, Vimal published his first book though he refutes any notion of being the main character in the story: “I am not Ajay but our experiences are closely linked and all the places Ajay visits are places I’ve either visited or lived in.”

Gentlemen: Stories from London tells the story of Ajay Vashishth, a young man from Delhi who comes to London and lodges in different parts of London including Bexleyheath, Ilford, Southall and Golders Green. Even with the exclusion of the Bloomsbury location, where Vimal would have spent much of his time while studying at Birkbeck, you’d be forgiven for assuming he and Ajay are one and the same.

However, Vimal insists not and divulges the details of his own upbringing, sharing aspects of life within a middle-class family, having a lawyer for a father and a grandfather hailing from Punjab, with family members keen for him to follow a ‘conventional career path’ in either law or medicine. With gentle resistance and with more creative inclinations, he pursued his undergraduate studies in commerce at the University of Delhi then decided on journalism at postgraduate level.

In 2019, his academic transition took him to Birkbeck and a city he’d never visited before. “It was the first time I’d been to London. I enjoyed the opportunity to visit places. I would see people wearing a coat and tie with office bags and a newspaper in hand.”

He accepts that the pre-pandemic period presented him with his best chances of socialisation saying, “I attended all workshops and events which were either very relevant or marginally relevant. I would go and meet people from other departments and would attend most of the events. I never skipped any classes. I would go out with friends. I went to the library as much as I could, including at Christmas. I even met friends from my country.”

Studying an MA in Journalism was a logical choice. He’d always liked writing and was fascinated by India’s booming television industry and the increasing acceptance of a career in the media. Prior to his studies, Vimal had spent ten years working in the media, primarily in India.

He has noticed subtle differences between the news in the UK and India, “The biggest difference is the way in which newspapers are heavily subsidised in India. I couldn’t imagine spending the two pounds or so on a newspaper in India. Of course, the newspapers in the UK can be found across the world but Indian newspapers are less likely to have that international reach.”

With a pandemic still in effect and with India having faced the brunt of it earlier this year with the Delta variant of the virus, Vimal shares his own personal reflections of how the media has handled the coverage: “I felt really pained watching the Covid-19 news. I was there when Delhi had one of its earliest lockdowns and I watched how the media covered the evolution of the virus and the spread of the variant. The media has an important part to play in exposing the pandemic but there needs to be accountability and the true picture should always be reflected. But we should also balance that because the reality of the situation can also spread panic.”

Further information

Share