I am 2 weeks into my time at Victoria, and it’s been a pleasant surprise in so many ways. One of the very first things I checked out was Chinatown, and I cannot be more glad that my favourite foods are so easily accessible and with enormous variety. The harbour in downtown is excellent as a relaxation spot after a long day at work, or just to chill. The city has a nice easygoing vibe so it does not feel like I’m working under a lot of pressure. I could not have picked a more suitable place to start a PhD, considering how long this process will be.
I am deeply interested in cross-cultural connections and exploring ‘what makes people tick’, which is also the reason why I’ve been studying abroad since I was 18. I completed my previous degrees in England before making my way to Canada, and I’m excited for what the present and future holds. I like interacting with people from diverse backgrounds and I’ve found that UVic is one of the greatest places to do this, because the variety of backgrounds of people in this community are astounding.
What interests me in particular, and what will probably be my capstone project, is basically exploring how an ‘international ‘experience in Canada altered the ‘worldviews’ of international students. I have not decided on the medium for this, however I am inclined to go with whatever my respondents prefer (eg. video) and blog post contributions. The process of self-reflection is the focus of attention here, as in how being in Canada (or any other country for that matter) changes oneself by inviting self-reflection on one’s own assumptions of the world and how it works.
In academia, a topic such as this would be filled with complicated jargon and terms that are not exactly reader-friendly. A huge reason I value this capstone project is because it provides an opportunity to communicate critical thinking perspectives in a more ‘layman’ way. It is also going to be an enriching learning journey for me as I navigate the boundaries between academic scholar, everyday practitioner and social activist. As I connect with my respondents as a friend, I will be exposed to many different ways of thinking and in the process, learn to be a more self-reflective person.
I cannot wait to see what my friends/respondents come up with to express their ideas. Until then, see you around!