Edith Boakye-Smith and Illaria Parrini

How does it feel to graduate today?

It's just amazing considering the year that we had. I did get covid so it was a bit of a struggle but the lecturers and this young lady friend of mine, now for life, were brilliant. They were so inspirational and that's the reason why I wanted to prove to myself and to everybody else that I could do it, regardless of everything that was going on.

And despite the pandemic, the university was there, the lecturers were there, we were there for each other so we supported each other throughout and that was very important.

How did your Master’s benefit you?

It cemented everything that I'm doing at the moment, understanding exactly what it means to work with the young people in the community and also the adults and the policies and commissioning and designing projects specifically for young people and for the community.

The knowledge that you acquire through your studies adds to what you're actually doing. I come from another background of study so I kind of changed my career in between and the fact that I was doing the course and I was enjoying it and I could apply what I was studying in my job successfully was really important and one probably of the best feelings that I felt throughout the course.

What were the most challenging aspects of your course?

Trying to get the assessments done! The lecturers were very good in the sense that they gave me extra time on top of what you are normally offered and I got more guidance with more one-to-one tuition and more feedback on what I had drafted, so that made it a lot easier and gave me the motivation to go back, because I was going to drop out but I carried on.

I'm not very much into computers or remote working but still the support was there and despite this difficulty it went well. I felt supported by the lecturers and by my friends, so we went through the challenges together. 

Is there anyone you’d particularly like to thank?

The course leader, Áine, was amazing. The feedback, every single module that we had, every single lecture, before the lecture, after the lecture, she was always online for two hours afterwards. If we had any problems, she could always help us, it was really brilliant and I think that gave us the motivation and perseverance to carry on, she empowered us and engaged us 110%.

She was making it motivating and also fun as well because at the end of the day, we talk and deal with some heavy stuff in the line of work we do, so Áine was able to make it lighter but still very empowering. 

What advice would you give to someone considering studying a degree?

It doesn't matter where you come from, if you believe in it and you want to do it, you should still do it and you will find support throughout the way, even if you think you won't, even if you think people won't see what you see, eventually they will. But you've got to try in the first place and you've got to believe in it.

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"I felt supported by the lecturers and by my friends, so we went through the challenges together."

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Edith and Illaria tell us about their graduation

We hear all about the London Met life from Edit and Illaria