How does it feel to graduate today?
All three years have paid off today and you can actually feel the buzz in the air so that makes us feel excited. Especially during a pandemic, it's great to see all our colleagues back together again. That's a community for us, it's a community in action because we stayed together throughout the pandemic.
Why did you choose to study your course?
My background was in housing, I was a housing manager and worked in different sectors of housing for quite a while but I took a couple of years out, I travelled, I went to Israel then came back. I thought I was done with studying but I caught sight of one of London Met’s billboards and got interested. Because I've been out of education for a while I thought it wasn’t going to work, but all of my lived experiences and work experiences actually counted towards this particular course. I felt I'm actually built for this course because I love community and social sciences as well, so that was great.
Which part of the course did you enjoy the most?
I enjoyed the research because I had a preconceived idea of what research was and wasn't, so the introduction to the model of researching kind of blew my mind, and that's what I do now. I loved studying with different people, different mature students, younger people; it's a course that brings the community together and that's the beauty of it. It's also an international university so it draws students from all nations, so that's another great thing about London Met.
What did you particularly enjoy about studying at London Met?
I had biases [when] I came to the university and it just broke down all of those biases and all of those perceptions. It's good to hear what other people think and know that your way is not always the right way. There's always a different perspective and you don't have to agree but you have to listen. It challenges your understanding and pushes the boundaries. Also my lecturers were super good - they did not allow us to sit on the fence, they constantly pushed us to do better, to think better.
What was the most challenging part of your course?
I think the hardest part was being in a learning environment after being away from learning. As an older student that was really challenging; I was reading and thinking that I wasn’t getting it, I’d have to read over and over and over again. But you have the support system that would go at your pace. Yes they challenge you, but they also tell you that you can do it. It's the encouragement, even during lockdown, there was this constant checking on us with my lecturers and course directors. There was this open policy and they would talk to you, not only about what's going on in your course but also personally as well so that made a big difference to how we studied.
What advice would you give to someone considering studying a degree?
Jump in! Honestly, jump in. It's the best thing, you will not regret it. If you put in the work it will pay out at the end of the day!
"I loved studying with different people, different mature students, younger people; it's a course that brings the community together and that's the beauty of it."
Toyin shares how she feels on the day of her graduation
We caught up with Toyin and asked her what it was like to finally graduate alongside her colleagues and tutors