Marlene Vasquez

MA Childhood and Youth Studies, 2017

Marlene Vasquez

As an international student my advice is to join societies, you’ll find people with similar interests and make new friends. The time will fly; take advantage of everything Brookes has to offer

Marlene Vasquez was working in New York at an afterschool programme that helped disadvantaged children gain literacy skills through dance, art, music and theatre. She was keen to travel overseas and study at MA level and chose Oxford Brookes as the course provided interesting modules that covered all aspects of childhood, and the location appealed to her.

I studied with people from a variety of professions that work with children, and this made for enriching conversations about the different countries we had worked in and the issues that children face. I’m excited to get back to work and put the knowledge I have gained into use.

My advisor Georgina Glenny has been tremendously helpful throughout the year and supported me with any academic related problem I had. The modules taught by Matt Tobin and Elise Alexander were inspiring. I also attended a leadership and management course at Oxford Brookes. That enabled me to reflect on my own team work skills and build my leadership abilities; that will help with future employment.

I became involved with the Water Sports society, surfing and learning to wakeboard were new experiences and they made my time as a Brookes student fun. The society gave me the opportunity to meet other people who were not on my course and in different stages of their undergraduate or postgraduate studies.

As an international student my advice is to join societies, you’ll find people with similar interests and make new friends. The time will fly; take advantage of everything Brookes has to offer. I made the mistake of waiting until too late to ask for help because I was scared, but when I did – it made all the difference!

My favourite aspect of Oxford is that it is a commuter city; I could reach my destination on foot or by bus without hassle. Cowley Road has everything a student needs: pubs, bars, shops and restaurants. There are also many cafes and bookshops in Oxford that made getting assignments finished easy. I was able to find quiet, beautiful spaces to work in.

I enjoyed my time at Brookes and I’m sad it is coming to an end. I’m now looking to find a job in the UK charity sector; the course has given me the skills to work on current and future policy that will improve the lives of children and their families.