Are the students who will start their bachelor’s study during the corona pandemic part of a ‘lost generation’? This week, we speak ten of those students about their hopes and fears. Today: Oisin McGinley (18) from Dublin, who is going to study Psychology at the UvA.
Why did you choose to study in Amsterdam?
‘My decision to study in Amsterdam was quite easy, to be honest. The degree in total costs just over € 5,000, when at home, it would be € 12,000. Taking into account that Amsterdam is also first in the European Union for Psychology, I really couldn’t resist it. I have always wanted to study abroad and felt like Amsterdam could provide me with the experience I desired and the UvA could match that academically.’
When are you expecting to visit the UvA for the first time?
‘I have already visited the UvA! I went to do a tour of the Roeterseiland Campus last summer, which really made me excited to eventually study here. I also just visited the campus last week to see how eerie it would be during corona times. I can’t wait to see it full of people – safely – and to become a part of the vibrant scene there.’
How do you expect to get to know fellow students without physical activities in the Intreeweek?
‘Lots of Whatsapp and Instagram groups. The day I arrived in Amsterdam I already saw two groups of friends. One of whom I had been on a Zoom call with as we will both study Psychology, and the others from a group chat for my accommodation. Also I have signed up to so many buddy programmes and have seen so many friendly people, I will certainly miss Intreeweek but I don’t think it will stop me from having fun or making friends!’
What do you expect from your study this first year?
‘To be honest, just a challenge. I am aware that the binding study advice is quite rigorous and that online learning is going to exacerbate that. I want to grow personally whilst living completely independently and also develop my academic knowledge of my degree to the best of my ability and then to begin to apply these lessons into my everyday life.’
Are you worried about following a lot of online classes and studying at home?
‘Less worried, more apprehensive. I think it’s easy to fall behind or become demotivated online. Combine that with the lack of support or challenge from your peers and it can be a little isolating. I think that being around other motivated students pushes you and offers you a benchmark of how to gauge your progress. I think that this is still possible online but it will be a critical thing lacking in the first semester for me.’