We have been in Oxford for about a week and a half now, and the adjustment has been quite an adventure, with us jumping into coursework and other activities almost immediately. Studying at the University of Oxford is definitely an intimidating feat: I am surrounded by my peers who are all extremely intelligent and other intelligent Oxford students as well. The pressure has definitely hit, as we are to complete the equivalent of six credits in five weeks. It becomes difficult to find the balance in working, versus taking in where I am, versus taking care of my basic needs. Basically, it’s like studying at CSU on steroids.
For this, though, I find myself to be quite lucky. I have the opportunity to gain so much knowledge through a Shakespeare course (which is out of my realm, being a Clinical Psychology major and Statistics minor) and through my tutorial in Psychopathology/Disorders with Oxford professors. I know this is difficult for me, but the challenge means that I am growing. I am also lucky in the fact that I have bonded with my peers at CSU who are here with me so incredibly well. We have cultivated these relationships through nights out, “study” sessions, pub stops, and day adventures to Windsor Castle and Stratford-Upon-Avon. I know I have important schoolwork, but having these friendships and exploring this amazing place is hard to put aside when need be. Thankfully, we are all in the same boat, and can crack down on the work together. I have also learned so much from my peers in our course and outside conversations, and I am so thankful for them all.
My tour guide for Trinity College, where I am an associate member, told us the unofficial motto here is “Work hard, play hard.” I have always kept this in mind through my collegiate career thus far, but it’s never been more applicable until I came to a new and exciting place – I just have to learn to find the proper balance.