While he has achieved a huge amount throughout his studies, for Nigel-Albert Garcia, it is the friendships he's made at London Met that have made his university experience so joyful.
Date: 08 December 2020
Architecture graduate Nigel-Albert Garcia is no stranger to high achievement.
Not only does he now hold both a first-class BA and a Master’s with Distinction from London Met, over the course of his studies he earned various other prestigious prizes - including the RIBA Bronze Nominee, Best Portfolio, Best IDA Diary and Best ISA Report awards – which he describes as “among the most momentous experiences” of his university studies. "This came to show how appreciated my work was by faculty, and that hard work and determination really does pay off."
Asked how it feels to have reached the end of his studies here, he said, "It feels surreal to finally realise what once seemed like a distant and unachievable goal - university studies and spending years working hard in order to achieve one’s dreams - has finally happened! It has materialised and ultimately paid off.
"There are a mixture of emotions, all being positive from the experiences one has gained, and learned and developed from university; but also unnerving realising that one is now stepping into the real world - which is scary but even more so it is exhilarating, especially as a young architect who wants to create and leave their mark on the world.
"University has been an experience which has allowed me to develop from a teenager into a knowledgeable, confident and mature young adult. It has made me face many challenges and overcome them. It has allowed me to discover myself, and permitted me to thrive in a creative and supportive environment, by being surrounded by like-minded individuals."
The city of London provided an inspiring backdrop to his studies. He said, "London has enriched and enhanced my university experience. It is an amazing city that offers everything any student may need, ranging from the finest establishments to aid you with your studies such as libraries and institutions related to your field, cultural overload through theatre and galleries, the best nights out with friends.
"I can’t give London the justice it deserves; instead I encourage whoever is thinking of studying in London to take the step and experience it themselves. They will not regret it."
Ultimately, however, he says it is the friends he has met here that made his studies so joyful. "The friendships one forms at university are what make your experience the best you’ll ever have," he says, "friends who find themselves in the same boat as you, friends who support you, friends whom you make memories with, and even form bonds and connections which you will take with you beyond your limited time at university."