Im pleased that I followed my heart and studied Sociology it allowed me to learn about Britain and also to develop a global perspective

When deciding what she was going to study in the UK, Phoebe wanted to explore something new.

Originally from Hong Kong, she felt pressured to pursue a Business or Economics related degree, but ultimately decided to follow her heart and pursue her interest in Sociology.

Graduating this week after three years of study, Phoebe reflects on why she’s proud of that decision: “I was definitely the ‘odd one out’ from my friendship group back in Hong Kong,” she said, “as they chose business oriented courses. However, it was more attractive for me to be exposed to something completely new. I wanted to do something special in the UK - to make the most of the opportunity to study abroad. That was part of my incentive for choosing Sociology, as I wanted to understand societies and cultures outside of my own, learn about Britain and also develop a global perspective.

“It was a pleasure to be in classes with so many British people and people from different all over the world. It was really interesting to find out how things such as gender and race work. By learning about sociological theories and concepts, I was able to increase my capacity to think critically and globally.”

Through her studies, Phoebe also found herself reflecting upon her understanding of the world, and even how she perceived her own culture.

“That was one of the most interesting aspects of the course - applying the knowledge to my daily life. I hadn’t come into contact with the concepts of gender and race in Hong Kong, but after the course I realised how big the world is, and that Hong Kong is only a small place.

“By trying to apply the theories and concepts in my own society, and even Asian society, I now understand more about how and why people would interact. In short, I learnt how to look at the world from different perspectives.”

As for her plans post-graduation, Phoebe said: “I don’t have a particular career in mind at the moment, but I think sociology allows you to be quite transferable to many different fields. In the long-run, I hope to get a job which is meaningful, that I can enjoy, and allows me to interact with many different people.”

Dr Ipek Demir, from the School of Media, Communication and Sociology, added: “It was great to see Phoebe blossom intellectually over the last 3 years. For her third year dissertation she got a very high first class mark, demonstrating her ability to engage with sociological ideas and apply them to a piece of social research. She's certainly got a bright future. Hopefully she'll also be a great ambassador for Sociology in Hong Kong.”