October 1st, 2020
Living and studying abroad is not only a dream for some people, it is also a challenge. In order to be able to do it, candidates must master a second language. This is more than necessary, it is a basic requirement of some prestigious scholarships, especially for The Chevening Scholarships Programme. This programme was created in 1983 by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Awards Scheme, and as it is explained on their website, the awards offer an opportunity to study in the United Kingdom, and also the possibility to be part of an influential network that has members all around the world.
Since its creation, Chevening has enabled tens of thousands of international professionals, and several Crandon Alumni have been selected to attend postgraduate courses in different areas. At the end of a university season and the beginning of another, we received Pablo Heberling Giudice and Vicente Bonilla Gonçalvez Vieira (Seniors 2008), and we chatted about the English Skills that are required for the Chevening Scholarships, among other topics.
Pablo Heberling Giudice is an Accountant graduated at Universidad Católica del Uruguay, he attended a Master in Tourism and Hospitality in Bournemouth during the Chevening Programme 2019-2020.
Dr. Charalampos (Babis) Giousmpasoglou says, on your LinkedIn profile, that you were one of the high engaging students. How did you get along with English?
Dr. Charalampos Giousmpasoglou was the leader of my course. I developed a bond with him because I was the students´ representative. It was really easy to get in touch and network with different students from the class, and my English level was very important for achieving that purpose.
Do you think that your English skills are thanks to what you learned in Crandon?
Well, yes, I’m sure it was, because, as Vicente said, I learned here. Before leaving school, I got the Proficiency degree. I stopped studying English and I continued just before leaving for studying in England in order to take the IELTS. Apparently my level was OK. I really believe that English level at Crandon is very good. I felt comfortable when I had to fill the applications and write the essays during the selection. Then, in England, all the classes were in English and finally the thesis with 15,000 words. But it is a process because you have a big barrier at the beginning. When you apply for the scholarship, you have to write four essays of 500 words each..
Are English studies important for the Chevening Scholarship?
Yes! You really need to study English. I think that here, at Crandon, we develop the English level even without knowing it. It was a surprise for me, when I started the University and then when I started to work, some people were surprised because I had Proficiency level. And I didn’t think that was that big of a deal. But definitely it was. Social and soft skills are very important too. Chevening means relationships and leadership and you have to develop not only for the scholarship, they are important in life. And those social and soft skills are Crandon values we acquired here.
Vicente Bonilla Gonçalvez Vieira studied Architecture at Universidad de la República and now is starting the MArch Architectural Design programme at the The Bartlett School of Architecture of University College London.
A lot of former and current students of Architecture say that English and Autocad were very important at the beginning of their careers at the University. Do you agree with that?
Yes, I totally agree. When you start the career at UDELAR you don’t have Autoacad or English classes and you need them to study and to develop the projects. So having that knowledge given by Crandon was like a huge advantage for me.
Did you feel self-confident at the beginning of the career?
Yeah. Totally, for the first period.
How are you preparing your English skills for the courses you are going to attend in London?
Well, I’m watching a lot of Netflix series in English obviously with subtitles in English. I think it’s a very good and enjoyable way of practicing. Since I left Crandon, I haven´t taken English lessons. My knowledge is based on what I studied at school. and it has been really useful in my life. I have travelled abroad and even lived three months in New York City.
What kind of recommendation would you give to those students that are thinking about a scholarship like Chevening?
You have to know what you want to study. You have to work on your profile. Like you have to be sure of the areas you want to develop because the Chevening programme looks for leaders and people who are fond of networking. So your career plan is very important. You have to prepare the application. It is hard. If you want you to win the award, you need to have your own ideas.
As all Chevening members, Pablo and Vicente contribute to the growth of the Chevening network, and they are at the disposal of anyone who might need help or a piece of advice. They were chosen because of their leadership and social skills, aspects that were born in their homes and shaped at Crandon, as well as their knowledge of English as they mention during the interview.