Profile: Kylie Chong
Kylie is in her third year studying law at Univ. She was previously International Students Rep on the JCR Committee and is currently Co-Chairperson of Oxford Legal Assistance.
Why did you apply to Univ?
There were lots of different factors, but basically, it came down to a gut feeling- Univ just seemed like the perfect match for me. I liked that it was central but not too well-known by tourists, that students have guaranteed 3-year accommodation, and that the libraries are open 24 hours (which was very important, I do most of my work at night!) I also knew that Univ had a reputation for being a friendly and social college, which really appealed to me.
Do you think you’ve changed since you started at Univ?
Definitely! I’d never studied abroad before, so everything was very new to me at first. There were a few bumps along the way (don’t even get me started on the visa application process) but I’ve had so much fun making new friends and adapting to life here. I think I’ve grown both personally and academically- I learned how to balance an intense workload, extra-curricular activities, and socializing while taking care of myself. At Oxford, you really need to adapt very quickly to a completely different pace and lifestyle, because you’re kind of just thrown into the deep end. My friends from home say I’ve become more self-assured- but I think this is just because they’ve never seen me in the middle of an essay crisis…
Have you experienced any challenges that you’re happy to share here? If so, how did you cope with them?
In the first few weeks, I definitely suffered from a few bouts of FOMO, and felt pressure to keep putting myself out there and going to every single social event. It seemed like everyone was having so much fun all the time, and I was scared of being alone and left out. This just resulted in me exhausting myself physically and mentally! Over time, I discovered that I’m an ambivert, so I really need time to myself in order to properly enjoy time spent with others. I spent some time finding a balance that worked for me, and gradually got more comfortable with blocking out “me time” and accepting that I can’t be everywhere all the time, or have infinite energy.
Why did you run for International Students Rep?
I ran for International Students Rep in my first year because I wanted to help international students feel more comfortable at Univ, represent their concerns within the JCR and college, and host fun social events! I’m now a third year and no longer in the role, but I’ve still really enjoyed attending socials and meeting people from all over the world – we’re all able to relate to each other’s struggles and it’s so nice to feel like other people understand.
Do you have any advice for international students?
Bring your favourite foods.
But seriously, before coming, reach out to your college parents or other people you know at Oxford/Univ – they’ll be able to give you the best advice for your situation, and everyone is always happy to help.
Describe Univ in three words.
Historic, friendly, fun!
Published: 31 October 2022