Nathalie joined the BSc (Hons) Marine Biology course from our partner institution, SKEMA Business School in France. Students from SKEMA are able to enter directly into the second year of our Marine Biology and Environmental Science programmes.
“I made really good friends from all over the world and as we keep saying “We are an international family”. If I had to go back two years ago and remake the choice, without a doubt I would choose Plymouth again."Why did you choose to study in Plymouth / the UK?
One of the partners of SKEMA encouraged me to consider studying at the University of Plymouth. This seemed like a great choice for me, as it’s an excellent university for marine biology in UK. Also, I have travelled a lot but never lived properly in another country so I chose a place to study where I could go back home for holidays or when I was homesick.
What were the best things about your course?
I really appreciated all the infrastructure including the boats, labs and was very impressed to have our own Marine Station.
I also loved the lectures with not only lecturers but proper scientists: they know what they are talking about. They are really passionate and they transfer this passion to the students.
As I arrived in second year, it was very nice to start the course with the field trip in Portugal so I had the opportunity to get to know the other students quicker.
What were the best things about Plymouth (the city)?
Without hesitating the Hoe and of course the Barbican. I think that Plymouth is a very nice student town, not too big so you don’t have too many distractions and can focus on your studies, but still lots of events going on during the week and weekends.
What were your favourite things about the university itself?
I found the campus very nice and had everything you needed with a gym, shop to buy food, coffee and Students’ Union.
Also, I really appreciated the international service with the international student induction week – that was really good. Indeed, I met most of my friends in that week. They explain everything you need to know and do when you arrive in England and I think it’s very comforting when you have come from abroad.
Did you find it hard to adjust to living in the UK, if so how did you cope with this?
Yes and no. The culture obviously is very different than mine. To be honest, as a French person I really miss the food. But on the other side, I was amazed and filled with wonder by the English mentality and the way that they don’t judge other people. Also, I didn’t think that Plymouth was that international and I was surprised and happy to meet people from all around the globe.
Did you join in with any sports or social societies at the University? What did you like to do in your spare time?
I didn’t join any societies but with hindsight it’s something that I would like to have done.
What would you say to someone considering studying at Plymouth?
I would say it was one of the best decision I have ever made and I spent two amazing years there. I made really good friends from all over the world and as we keep saying “We are an international family”. If I had to go back two years ago and remake the choice, without a doubt I would choose Plymouth again.
Are you happy about the facilities/support that is available?
Yes, particularly the excellent library where I spent a great part of my time.
What are your future plans?
I’m going to Mallorca to work in a dive centre this summer. I want to work as a dive master and travelling at the same time for a while. Then I want to find a way to link my BSc (Hons) Marine Biology degree to diving and conservation.
Inspired by this story?
For more information about studying marine biology, please visit our BSc (Hons) Marine Biology page. For more information about our range of courses within the School of Biological and Marine Sciences, please visit the school page.
Want to find similar alumni?
If you would like to find out what other relevant alumni are currently doing, please visit the marine, earth, geography and environment interest area.