Kelly Pichur


As a teenanger, I thought lecturers would be old men in suits

that can be quite condescending. That's what I used to think, especially with a degree that encourages so much debate. But at the moment, a vast majority of the teaching staff are female. So it’s been really nice to have a more representative and varied number of voices that you can learn from, especially on a topic like crime. When I was speaking to Oxford Brookes representatives at an Open Day, it was the one university that felt like it was breaking the mould, and I really liked that.

Not only am I heard, I’m encouraged to speak.

I think a lot of the lecturers focus on breaking down stigmas, because people quite often have strong opinions about crime. There has always been a strong focus, not just on what we write, but actually where our views and opinions come from. Is it coming from the media? Does the answer lie within your upbringing? It’s fascinating! It's nice when you can sort of have your opinions, but also have facts pointed out to you, but not in a way that's patronising or trying to discredit you.

Academics know what sort of person I am and what I am capable of.                                                                         Kelly on phone on campus 

As someone who has undiagnosed autism and ADHD, academic learning has always been challenging. The teaching emphasis in education tends to cater towards those that are neurotypical, that’s how the world works. So, someone like myself has always had to learn ways to respond to a system that is built for neurotypical people. But all of the lecturers have been amazing and done all they can to accommodate me. Whether that’s through additional assistance, different ways of putting across ideas or one-on-one sessions. What’s more, some people don't deal with exams very well whatsoever, so it's nice having the ability to do a course that isn't just exams.

They know what they're talking about.

I think a lot of people miss the point of university and they treat it like school. But the academics have spent years in academia and maybe even longer in the sector. To listen to them speak is a privilege, and it shouldn’t be disregarded in the same way as a teacher at your college.