United Kingdom (UK) universities with their high quality of education and world-leading reputation for teaching and research, consistently rank at the top of global university ranking. This fact has attracted many people from all around the world to pursue their higher education in UK. According to Global Flow of Tertiary-Level Students published by UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS), UK is one of the top destination countries for Indonesian to study abroad.
To provide information about studying in UK for its students as well as lecturers who are interested in continuing their education abroad,The Office of International Affairs of Universitas Kristen Duta Wacana (UKDW) in collaboration with IDP Education Ltd Yogyakarta and University of Glasgow organized Info Session on Studying in UK with the theme “People Make Glasgow with University of Glasgow - Scotland”. The event was conducted on Friday, October 19, 2018 at Classroom G.3.4 with around 35 participants in total. The speaker in this info session was Alfin Firdaus who serves as Indonesia International Officer University of Glasgow, and as the representative of IDP Education was Ida Ayu.
Alfin who is responsible for recruitment, engagement, and partnership as well as the main contact for Indonesian students interested in studying at University of Glasgow, began his presentation, “University of Glasgow is located in Scotland, UK. It was established in 1451, and one of the oldest universities in the world, which is fourth-oldest in English speaking country, and second-oldest in Scotland after St. Andrews University.” He further explained that University of Glasgow is a research university and a member of the Russell Group, which represents 24 leading UK universities committed to maintaining the very best research, an outstanding teaching and learning experience, and unrivalled links with business and the public sectors. “As an ancient university, it is allowed by the Royal Family that the title of Master of Arts is awarded to undergraduate degree in University of Glasgow. This is quite appealing for students from ASEAN countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia,“ Alfin stated.
In its course of history, University of Glasgow has been associated with seven Noble laureates, namely Sir William Ramsay (Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1904), Frederick Soddy (Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1921), John Boyd Orr (Nobel Peace Prize in 1949), Sir Alexander Robertus Todd (Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1957), Sir Derek Barton (Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1969), Sir James Black (Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1988), and Professor Robert Edward (Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2010).
“Adam Smith, the founder of modern economics, the author of The Wealth of Nation is one of Glasgow’s famous alumni. He started studying at Glasgow at the age of 14. During his career, he was once elected to serve as rector. In the field of engineering, you must be familiar with James Watt who improved steam power engines and was a key figure in Industrial Revolution. Probably the most well known in Indonesia is Joseph Lister, a pioneer of antiseptic surgery, whose name inspired a brand of antiseptic mouthwash,” Alfin added. In addition, Glasgow alumni can be found in world leading company such as Apple, Google, HSBC, JP Morgan, Rolls Royce, Facebook, Oxfam, British Council, and L’Oréal. Some of notable alumni currently hold the position as First Minister of Scotland, Chief Medical Officer for Scotland, Managing Director of Nokia (Australia/New Zealand), Executive Producer of BBC Wales Commissioning, and Trust Board Director of NHS.
Continuing his presentation, Alfin explain about the requirement to be enrolled in the University of Glasgow. “We accept students with at least GPA of 3.0 from university which is accredited A. If the university is accredited B, it is required to have GPA of 3.3 or higher,” he said. Meanwhile, the English language requirement is IELTS with minimum score of 6.5. For students who want to take PhD, research proposal is needed. There are around 2.500 active researchers in Glasgow. It means that the chance for Indonesian students to pursue PhD degree in Glasgow is widely opened.
The University of Glasgow comprises of four colleges, i.e. College of Medical, Veterinary & Life Sciences, College of Science & Engineering, College of Social Sciences, and College of Arts. The Collage of Engineering is the oldest in UK, while the Collage of Social Science is the most popular. “In the College of Arts, students can learn about history, archeology, museum studies, heritage building, etc. It actually is needed in Indonesia since we have many historical building and heritage, unfortunately they are not well preserved,” he mentioned.
Participants in this event who come from various department in UKDW also got information about scholarships available at University of Glasgow such as Undergraduate Excellence, Postgraduate Country Scholarship, Postgraduate University Trust International Leadership, Commonwealth Scholarship, and Chevening Scholarship. To be eligible for University of Glasgow scholarship, students should meet the minimum GPA of 3.4. The amount varies from £5,000 to £10,000 of tuition discount. According to Alfin, Chevening Scholarship is quite “friendly”. It is a full scholarship that requires the applicants to have at least two years’ work experience. The good news is, the work experience can include students’ part time job. The selection process will review on how the program taken at University of Glasgow will benefit Indonesia.
Talking about studying overseas, living expenses is another thing to be considered. In London, living expenses could be quite high around £1,250 to £1,500 per month. Alfin mention in his presentation that living expenses in Glasgow is approximately £950, but according to his students, the amount could be less, which is £700 per month. If Chevening Scholarship awards £1,050 then there will be £350 of margin. In other word, the scholarship is more than enough to cover the living expenses. However, it depends on one’s own lifestyle. PhD students can also work as examining partner to earning money for living cost.
International Student Support at Glasgow University is available to help and provide information on working in the UK, finance, general welfare, health, immigration, and opportunity to socialize and visit the local area.
Glasgow was recently named as the second world’s friendliest city according to Rough Guides (2017). The slogan of “People Make Glasgow” reflects the friendliness of the people in this city. It is a safe place to live with many parks and public gardens, music festivals every week, museums and galleries, sport events and other attractions.
The participants were very enthusiastic to learn about studying in UK, especially University of Glasgow. Some of the questions asked during the question and answer session were about IELTS requirement, duration of study, choosing a suitable program, and understanding Scottish accent. The discussion has enriched participant’s knowledge about studying in UK. [drr]