Fire Safety Engineering student Hasan Alghamdi feels that studying the pre-sessional English course has gone a long way to helping him achieve success in his future studies and career.
The 32 year-old from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, progressed from the pre-sessional course in 2014 and is currently studying his master's degree in Fire Safety Engineering, with aspirations of working as part of the Fire Service once he graduates.
The course requires students to speak and write in fluent English, and are skills which Hasan feels the pre-sessional course helped him to acquire.
“I’m currently studying my master's in Fire Safety Engineering. It was a difficult course to get on and I needed to improve my English first through the pre-sessional lessons,” explained Hasan.
“The pre-sessional course has helped a lot. Improving my writing skills has helped me most as now I’m on my masters’ I have many assignments and a dissertation to complete so writing in good, quality English is essential.”
Adapting to living in the UK can prove difficult for a lot of international students and Hasan admits the transition from life in Saudi Arabia was not easy at first.
“It was difficult to move here initially but now I have no problems. The weather was the main difference. I moved from 45 degree heat at home to a much colder place in Preston, but now I am used to it.”
“I also learnt a lot about British culture through the course which has been useful. It’s never easy moving to a different country where you don’t know the customs or culture so it was important for me to learn.”
The opportunities to socialise with other international students are one of the advantages of coming to UCLan according to Hasan and he still keeps in contact with the friends he made on the pre-sessional course.
“I made friends on the course with Japanese and Chinese students. I still go to the Japanese society every Wednesday at the Students’ Union to socialise with many of them.”
As Hasan enters his final few months of study, he has plenty of appreciation for UCLan as a university and also as a place to enjoy new experiences.
“UCLan is definitely a place you can come to improve yourself. Not only do you get a good education and a certificate, but you build friendships and enjoy new experiences that stay with you forever.”