I SURVIVED MY FIRST YEAR AT IMPERIAL — here is the ups and the downs


Coming to Imperial was honestly surreal for me, it felt like a dream, and when I woke up it was exam time, and I had to fought tooth and nail to survive. Until I was actually in London, there was always a possibility at the back of my mind to back out. I wanted the easy path, the “I know I can ace every
single class”, which was why Imperial was sort of my second choice. Yes, you heard me, it was my second choice, despite the fact that tons of people are dying to get in.

I know from the beginning, that Imperial would be hard, so I lost hope since the beginning. I thought, it would be better for me to fail and get expelled than actually try and fail. There was no doubt that I picked the right course, I actually love the course (except well, maybe one or two modules). But, I was doubting myself, I kept on asking why did they accept me. I thought, by no means am I an ideal candidate, I wasn’t top of my class at school (except math), I’m the furthest from a teachers pet, I haven’t quite accomplished much in my life. I’m just a girl who absolutely loves math, and thinks I can make an impactful difference through it.

Okay, here comes the ups.
1. I just spent the last year being taught by world leading researchers. I mean one of them even worked on the Twin Tower in Malaysia. Plus, one time, the engineer who was working on the Shard came to Imperial and gave a talk about the construction. (P.s. How can you not think it’s so impressive)
2. Being constantly awed by the work of one or all of your lecturers/professors — No jokes, sometimes I’m so awed I can’t even form a proper sentence talking to them.
3. Living in London. Despite it being excruciatingly expensive, I absolutely absolutely love living in London. Anything you could imagine doing (including surfing, just find a big enough hydrodynamics lab to do it?), you could almost always do it in London. Meeting Prince Harry maybe? Well, guess what he’s been to Imperial, just this summer.

And the downs.
1. I just mentioned that living in London is expensive, well imagine exam week. You just tap your Apple Pay here and there, eat out, calling Uber for a 5AM pick up. Trust me, it adds up real quick. And oh my gosh, stress shopping is legit. If I’m telling myself I can’t go to Harrods because I have to revise, I’d spend an hour scrolling through most of the major shopping sites.
2. The dumb stare — okay, to be fair this could happen anywhere, not just imperial. It’s basically when you’re like so lost, and you have absolutely no clue what’s going on. So, a person that has superior knowledge of the subject just stares at you in silence — I call this the dumb stare, and did I mention that I’m not a fan of the awkward silence.

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