Name: Ruth Cobban
Nationality: Zimbabwean / South African
Hometown: Harare, Zimbabwe
Why did you decide to come to Liverpool?
I thought it would be exciting to start my course in the year that Liverpool was Capital of Culture, and I’d heard a lot of good things about the city. The course sounded great too, and when I came for an open day, I really liked the atmosphere of the city. Liverpool is a good size, and there are lots of interesting things going on all the time.
Did Liverpool measure up to your expectations when you arrived?
Liverpool exceeded my expectations, the people are amazingly friendly and there is a really positive feeling in the city. All the new developments in the city centre have made Liverpool even better, and there is now even more to do and see. The nightlife is great, and there are loads of good shops and pubs and restaurants, so it’s hard to get bored here! I also like that there are parks and green spaces nearby, and the docks and local beaches, like Cosby and Formby, are really easy to get to.
I think there’s something for everyone here.
What is your favourite place in Liverpool?
It’s so hard to pick a favourite place in Liverpool! I really like the docks. I often go there with friends on Sundays and have breakfast or a coffee, looking out over the water. It’s a really tranquil, relaxing place. There are great restaurants, and coffee shops and some good galleries and museums. It’s an area of Liverpool that’s been really well developed; there are great views of the city and across the water. It’s a place where you can get a real sense of the city’s history.
What was the most exciting moment for you since you came to Liverpool?
I think the most exciting moment for me, was seeing some of my work published in a local paper. Not very exciting, I know, but it is so amazing to see your name and your work in a proper paper! It was great knowing that my course had helped me to improve sufficiently to reach that goal. The Capital of Culture celebrations were also fantastic, it was really great to be in the city at such an exciting time!
What advice can you give other international students who come to Liverpool?
I would definitely recommend LJMU to other people. The quality of teaching is excellent, and the mix of practical and theoretical modules means you really get a good, holistic base from which to start your career. I’ve learnt so much in the two years I’ve been at John Moores. I’ve grown in confidence and capability, and now I’m really sure that my chosen course is what I want to do when I finish. One of the major benefits of going to John Moores is having lecturers with practical experience in the field and good contacts in the industry. I think it’s really important to be open to any opportunities that come your way, especially at the beginning; join groups, accept invitations to events etc., get out and visit the city, go to galleries and museums, if that’s what you’re into, or just walk around and get to know the city. There is a lot of support for international students, the ERASMUS group for foreign students is really active, and it’s a great way to meet other people who may be in the same situation as you.
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Ruth's favourite pictures
Ruth thinks the dock area is a relaxing environment that gives visitors a real sense of the city's history