Read here a great article from The Pie News written by Claudia Civinini about how it’s important to establish a community feel within student accommodation. It is good to see this affirmation of the Alumno ethos of creating and designing new accommodation that encourages community.
Below are some examples from students living in Alumno schemes who were interviewed for our upcoming book “The Shared Space”. The book will be available to read online soon.
Stratford – Aspire Point
‘I’m from Hebei, not to far from Beijing. This is my first time living abroad. I wanted to come to the UK for the experience and to study something that really interested me. I like the accommodation very much. We can meet, eat and drink. The whole look and feel of the place gives a very positive message about culture. It makes me feel relaxed about being here and meeting people.’ – Michael Ma
Aberdeen – Powis Place
‘I’m from Elgin, well outside Elgin, pretty much a field outside Elgin, but Aberdeen is less than two hours away. I’ve already got a part-time job here, working in a shop in Union Street, so I’m learning to deal with all sorts of different people. Some easier than others, but I think that’s making me a more rounded person. The population here is really quite multi-cultural, so that broadens your knowledge and understanding of life. I think I’ll travel more widely now, because I’ve met people from around the world and become intrigued. Students have people over for parties, or just visiting family and friends. I’ve had my family over. My dad’s been up and my mum. They think it’s surprisingly posh and really appreciate the safety aspect.’ – Megan Thomson
Durham – Sheraton Park
‘I’ve absolutely fallen in love with the place. It’s been an ideal setting especially for studies. It doesn’t have too many distractions, but at the same time it gives you the kind of social life you expect in a college setting. Durham is big enough to have a bit of fun, but small enough that you can pretty much walk everywhere. I go to London to visit, or for conferences and appreciate that it’s a fantastic city, but think I may have found it more of a challenge to build daily human connections. Ustinov is family away from family. You mix happily with everybody, whether it’s the cleaning staff, the management, or friends and colleagues. I’m a big fan of cinema, but mainly used to watch Bollywood movies. I came here and people introduced me to all sorts of eras and genres of film making from different countries. It’s been a real eye opener and cultural exchange, I’ve made friends from the rest of the world. I came here to study, but I’ve also learned things that have contributed to my growth and development as a human. Things I would never have dreamed of, sitting at home, looking at a computer. You can learn a lot from the internet these days, but there’s no substitute for real life experiences. I think my experiences here have helped me understand life a bit better.’ – Vinay Utham
Birmingham – University Locks
‘Even though the second semester in Chicago got better, I thought, three years in another country could be a great experience. Before I came here I didn’t know much about Birmingham, so it was a kind of a leap of faith, but I’m very happy with how things have worked out, with the course, the city and the accommodation. The first big plus about being here is the local culture. People seem really friendly and a lot more willing to talk to you, than my experiences in the States. They’re at the pub, they’re having fun. Birmingham particularly seems like a very open place. Everybody seem to embrace each others differences, and are just together in Birmingham. The students especially have all been very welcoming to me. They find out that I’m American and some of them find it interesting. Some of them tease me about it and some even find the accent quite suave, which I don’t fully understand, because in America it’s the British accent that’s considered the attractive one. So that’s a plus. We’ll go to the pubs and cafes nearby and find good places to eat, listen to music or whatever. There’s loads of great shopping as well and all just a short walk away.’ – Patric Schwaab