David Ayo-Odugbesan is a former International Foundation Programme student who is currently studying a Masters in Law at Kent. In his story below, David talks about how the Academic Peer Mentor scheme was invaluable in his transition to the UK education system and how he is now able to offer support to benefit other international students.
“In a rather quick summary, one can refer to the one year International Foundation Programme (IFP) as a full-time program which is aimed at preparing international students for degree-level study in the UK. Support is made available to help students settle into the campus life and also students begin to gain more enlightenment as to the skills and knowledge needed for undergraduate study. It is a very important year for students who are coming in from other countries to the UK for study as it acts like an introductory bridge both into the academic and the social demands that degree-level study in the UK requires. In my personal experience, as it will be for quite a number of incoming students, the IFP was quite a challenging year; especially in the chase for successful passage into the undergraduate degree (which was an LLB in my case). The challenges came in the forms of trying to accommodate the work demands while attempting to adjust to the change in the social construct around me. However, in my IFP year I was a mentee under the Academic Peer Mentorship (APM) scheme and I can testify first hand as to the help and assistance it offers IFP students who are a part of it. It provides help to students from those who they can be rest assured have been through the same situation they have – other students!
It was due to these reasons I decided to remain in the APM Scheme even after my IFP year as a mentor so as to offer the same assistance to incoming students which was made available to me when I was once in their ‘shoes’. It came to my notice that all students are different and, while some would never need the assistance of the APM scheme, some others would find its assistance to be indispensable. Although my services were not needed as often in some years as the others, I was always available to support any member of the scheme once contacted. Graduating from the LLB earlier this year (Class of 2018) was one of my greatest achievements due to all of the challenges I had to face in order to be successful and I am quite proud of it; however I also do owe the APM scheme a vote of thanks as it put me through in the beginning of my journey in the first place when I was in serious need of assistance.
I am currently studying a Masters in Law (LLM) at the University of Kent as my final leg and, once again, I have made myself available to the APM Scheme to be of help to students who are in the circumstances I once was in and, as my understanding is quite deepened, I hope to be of even more help than I have been before to this wonderful program put together by the wonderful staff of the university who understand the plight of incoming international students.”
If you would like learn more about the Academic Peer Mentor scheme, please visit the University of Kent Academic Peer Mentoring webpages.
If you would like to find out more about our International Foundation Programme and how we provide support to make your transition to the UK education system as smooth and enjoyable as possible, please visit our IFP webpages.