Ralueke E. Atusiubah
What made you decide to do this MA programme?
While working as a secretary in the international development agency UNAIDS, I observed with dismay the huge sums of money spent on conferences compared to the very little done to assist those living with HIV/AIDS directly in terms of providing care and treatment and most especially exploring other effective means of combating the pandemic. The desire to study for a Masters in Theatre and Development Studies was motivated by my desire to explore theatre which I believe is an effective means of combating the HIV/AIDS epidemic but which has been given little attention in my country.
Why did you choose to study at POLIS?
With a theatre background in my first degree I felt taking a development course will enhance and widen my knowledge to be fully equipped for the task ahead.
What do you think of your course so far – How has it matched your expectations?
My course is a one year programme which means I am done with course work and am left with only my research. I must confess that it has been a very rewarding experience both academically and otherwise. I took Development Theories, Strategies and issues, Rural Development and Research methodology and I learnt quite a lot.
What have you enjoyed most about the course so far?
Back home where I come from, in Nigeria, the mode of study is different. I enjoyed the seminars because they were engaging and prompted me to research and study more. I took a course in Rural Development. Initially, I did not understand the policies by the United Nations, especially the World Bank and IMF, but, with time, I got to understand thanks to my lecturer Dr Zülküf Aydin and the resources available at the library.
What would you say about the facilities in the School and at the University in general?
The facilities provided by the school and the University were very useful in my academic pursuit. Ranging from the portal, library services, seminars and lectures. The Scarborough trip was a good idea. I enjoyed it but most especially it helped me to get to know my course mates better. I hope you continue with it so that students can have an opportunity to interact with each other and get to know themselves better.
The staff at the POLIS office were also very friendly and ever willing to help with useful information and making photocopies for seminars. Their friendliness and willingness to help encouraged me to always come back for assistance and it made things a lot easier for me.
What would you say to anyone thinking of applying to your course?
I would encourage them to participate fully in every activity both academic and extra curricular activities. If you are coming from a country where the system of education is different just be determined to excel and I assure you, you will make it.
Most importantly I will advice everyone TO START YOUR ESSAYS EARLY. Don't leave it till the last minute or you will regret it. The level of commitment you give to your essays will determine to a large extent your commitment to your thesis. A good essay writing strategy will ultimately rub off well when writing your thesis. Don't forget this!
Tell us about your favourite lecturer
My favourite lecturer? That's a difficult one. I enjoyed most of my lectures but I will like to mention Dr Zülküf Aydin, Dr Polly Wilding, Dr Jelke Boesten and Professor Caroline Dyer. Apart from the fact that I enjoyed their lectures, they were always very friendly and approachable. They were always willing to explain further after lectures to clarify things or advise on further reading.
For instance when I did not understand the referencing system to use and I went to Dr Wilding she advised me to go to the POLIS office to request for a booklet that explains in details. She went further to explain some other things I needed to clarify. I was really impressed.
Same with Dr Boesten. Without booking an appointment, I met her after lectures for a feed back on my essay and she was willing to see me the same day and took out time to explain things and advised me on what to do next time to perform better
Dr Aydin was patient with us and took time to explain the course rural development. Due to the nature of the course itself initially, it was difficult to comprehend but he tried as much as possible to simplify things. The seminars also helped a lot.
When I did not know how to go about writing my Research Methodology essay, Professor Caroline Dyer was patient with me until I was able to sort myself out.
What do you hope to be doing once you graduate?
It all depends but I hope to work in an organisation where I can use theatre to bring about positive changes in society.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Sometimes I go swimming. I also visit friends or vist the international student club on Wednesdays when I can.