MA Education (International Education)
Stephanie Muraca joins us from Arcadia University, Pennsylvania, America, to study for a MA in Education (International Education).
The 23 year old student loves travel and has extensive experience working with children from different cultural, economic and ethnic backgrounds in Philadelphia, Sydney and London.
“Looking at a map of the world my mind races thinking about all of the places that I haven’t seen. Connecting with deeper thinking, I know that people reside in these areas, people who live completely different lives and have been raised with values that contrast with my own. Moving away aged 18 to start my degree connected my mentality to the rest of the world, and it helped me transform into the woman I am today with a global perspective.”
Stephanie feels that comparing her experiences has given her a valuable insight and has shaped her opinions on education. Being in unfamiliar environments has allowed her to study different attitudes towards education, “I worked in an after-school programme with secondary school children who lived in the poorest areas of Sydney. In that type of neighbourhood, they didn’t care about enforcing children’s homework, they simply needed a place to go to be safe. This relaxed approach towards education in their community was in direct comparison to the poorest Philadelphia areas, which although were worse-off, placed higher emphasis on doing schoolwork”.
Stephanie is excited to start a new chapter of her life at the University of Bath. Speaking about the University, she likes the campus layout as it is easy to find everything, as well it has “great facilities like the cafes, bars, shops and restaurants that are easy to get to”. Her decision to come to Bath was due to the impressive International Education programme and the excellent communication she had with the University, including the helpfulness of the staff. She is also grateful for the support she received when she injured her leg which meant she couldn’t walk. “My teachers and friends in classes helped support and take care of me. One teacher even asked her colleague to check up on me after going to the hospital which made me feel like I wasn’t alone, even though I'm so far from home”.
The strong international community at the University has made Stephanie feel very welcome, “I wasn't expecting it to be so active and helpful. I always receive emails about events for international students. Everyone really does their best to make students from all over the world feel at home”.
The UK in general interested Stephanie as she wanted to live abroad for a good amount of time to be able to really adjust to living in a new country. She chose England as it is easy to return home so she feels comfortable enough to settle into her new surroundings.
In terms of the city, Stephanie particularly loves the wide diversity of ethnic restaurants that it offers, which “encourages the community to expand beyond British food”. She also believes that Bath is unique because of its history and charm, “I've never seen a city that seems so preserved in its original state!” Furthermore it is close enough to London without being overwhelming, which is the experience she wanted coming to England.