My happiest moment… I think perhaps last year. It was the awards evening for Southend Campus and I received an overwhelming number of awards - I think probably the most out of all Southend students. It really made me feel special and different and made me realise my potential because as a student you wouldn’t know that you can do so much to create change.
When I look back it was kind of like reflecting on what I have done for the university, for myself, my progression and it was a big deal for me to have done so much, so yeah I think that was one of the highest points in my life.
At Southend, being a commuting student, it was really tough because it was hard to communicate with other students; it was hard to find friends and it was hard to get to know people.
For about a month or so, I really felt like I wasn’t in my place and like I should leave the University. I was considering all these things but then that was when I found out what the Students' Union was and I was just like; this is my place. So I started helping out doing different activities and events. Generally just trying to get together with people, trying my best to get to know people. That changed my life and I know that if I didn’t put myself out there this would never happen and I would probably just be in the same position, still feeling really sad and upset. But yeah, everything’s changed now.
That jump from being sad to happy was literally within a month. Everything changed. I got involved with the SU and I realised this is where I’m supposed to be.
Essex means home. Going to this university for two years now, when I go into the SU lounge I feel like I’ve just come home - I feel welcome. I'm getting used to the lifestyle, going to lectures, meeting people, meeting staff. It’s like this is my place now. This is where I’m going to be.
It makes me feel like I’m going to be here for a really long time and this is where I belong. And I feel so welcomed by the University and the atmosphere.