Postgraduate Study in Politics and International Relations at Kent

Kent was kind of a no-brainer for me, I
did my undergraduate here for the last three years and I love the atmosphere on
campus, it’s so vibrant it’s such a rich student life. The politics school is
really highly ranked so that’s a very good thing to be a part of. One of the
fantastic things about Kent is that you have a great range of opportunity in
terms of subjects that you can study. We have staff who work on international
relations, on conflict, on the study of regions, the study of governments and
importantly the study of Europe. But we also have staff who have particular
expertise in areas such as contemporary warfare and also look at different
international organisations. In terms of the teaching at Kent, I think one of the standout features is that the lecturers, whether they’re professors, whether they’re doctors or even the PhD students, you can see that they’re invested in what
they’re teaching. The calibre of lecturers we have here they’re
just brilliant, they they’re well known in their fields and they’re interesting
and again it doesn’t feel like you’re just being spoken to, you feel like
you’re part of a bigger thing. The lecturers will ask for students’ input on things they themselves are looking into so you really feel like you become part of
the academic community. One of the characteristics of the School is that we have research-led teaching which means that we have a body of academics who are active in their fields, who are active within the university and outside the
university and we try to bring that into the student learning experience by
having exchanges on really cutting-edge research. The kind of stuff that hasn’t
yet made its way into books but you only really get from people who are on the
ground, finding out about sort of contemporary political and international
relations challenges. We have a vibrant postgraduate community, they have various offerings from weekly seminars that are specifically
designed to train our students in publishing, in how to handle the job
market and how to present at conferences. We also have very specific research
groups that look at, for example, European issues, so the Global Europe Centre; the Conflict Analysis Research Centre, the questions of conflict,
security, terrorism. We have the Centre for Critical Thought that looks at questions of political theory. And these are very strong sort of sub
communities if you want, where people can present their work, can see academics
present their work and have very in-depth discussions on those topics.
There’s a very diverse student culture here with Kent Union, all the societies
you can join, further guest lectures you can attend. It offers a totally new
perspective, and I think that diversity is part of what drew me to Kent.
Finding out that the campus was so diverse and that my programme would be
from students from all over the world not just the UK was I think
probably one of the most attractive things about the program itself. One of
the distinctive things about our School is that we are the only School in the
country which operates with a full-time presence in Brussels, we have a
collection of staff who are there which means that we have a cockpit into one of
the most important political economic and public policymaking centres in
Europe. What’s really distinctive about that site is a purpose-built and
dedicated centre for postgraduate study in Brussels which combines both academic
study but also the opportunity to pursue things like internships and really makes
fantastic use of the cluster of expertise that you find in the city of
Brussels, hosting key institutions like the EU and NATO. Most definitely as I’m interested in the European Union, that’s going to help me in any jobs that I may get, through interaction with the European Union. Furthermore, my negotiation and mediation lectures have been very helpful for any type of negotiation
with anything I do later in life whether it be civil service, through diplomacy or
anything else in the private sector. One of the strengths of Kent is a lot of our
academics have very close connections with the policy world and therefore
they’re able to invite these people to come and speak to students at
Kent. One of the standout features of learning at Kent is that you have
visiting academics and visiting experts from various fields that aren’t just
isolated to the school you are working in yourself. Recently I went to a lecture
by Lord Ricketts which is all about his experience in the diplomatic
services which is a career that I’m interested in going into. As a campus, Kent is very relaxing. The city itself is beautiful. It’s nice to take a break and go down and have a picnic at the Cathedral or hang out even on the hill by the library just to take a quick study break and get some fresh air. The facilities on campus are amazing, I live in Woolf College on campus, so everything is at my fingertips. I can go to the library whenever I need to. There are several bars and lunch spots to go to on campus, so you can enjoy a
lot of social activities on campus as well. So there’s never a boring moment
for a student at Kent.

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