Student spotlight: Noor Chopra
Economics student Noor Chopra, originally from New Delhi, shares her UCL experience.
20 November 2023
Noor Chopra is an undergraduate student at UCL Economics. Originally from New Delhi, India, Noor is a trained Kuchipudi dancer and recently performed at London’s Nehru Centre as part of its Indian Republic Day celebrations. Here she tells us more about her experience as a UCL student so far…
Tell us more about what you are studying at UCL.
I’m a final year student studying Economics. Economics is a subject I have always been interested in and I thoroughly enjoy studying it. Throughout my years at UCL, I’ve covered a wide range of courses ranging from micro and macroeconomics to specialised fields like behavioural economics, development economics, and econometrics. The Economics department incorporates innovative teaching methods and technology to enhance our learning experience while emphasising the practical application of economic principles.
What led you to apply for UCL?
UCL stands as one of the world’s top-ranking universities, and its Department of Economics is highly regarded with its access to exceptional faculty and resources. What truly drew me to UCL was its diverse student body and the opportunity to be part of a global learning community. After speaking to several UCL alumni who shared their unique experiences, my heart was set on applying to UCL.
The location of the university, nestled in the heart of London, was a very appealing aspect for me, opening doors to a wealth of cultural, social and career opportunities. Being an economics student, London’s status as a major global financial and business hub presented an ideal environment, offering a wide range of job opportunities across various industries.
What are your favourite things about living here?
What I adore most about London is its boundless opportunities for exploration and the valuable lesson it has taught me about appreciating the world around me. This city’s richness in diversity extends to its culinary delights, vibrant festivals, and distinctive neighbourhoods, offering a continuous source of fascination. I love trying new things and enjoy going to Camden Market and Borough Market in my free time. Additionally, one of my treasured pastimes is going on walks or picnics to Hyde Park or Regents Park, which provides the perfect escape from the bustling city when life becomes hectic.
How did you find the process of applying here?
I found the process of applying very simple and straightforward. I submitted my personal statement and school grades via UCAS which automatically went straight to all the five universities that I applied to. Before applying, I also spoke to a few alumni students as well as attended university fairs which gave me a lot of guidance and clarity about the application process.
How do you find the work/life balance of studying at UCL?
When I first started university, I found it challenging because the workload was unlike what I was used to in school. However, after a month or two I got into the flow of it and was successfully able to manage juggling my studies with other activities. I made sure I stuck to an organised timetable for classes, self-studying and extra curriculars and eventually, I became much better at managing my time without compromising my work or personal life.
What activities have you taken part in at UCL outside of your studies?
As a Kuchipudi (Indian classical) dancer, UCL has given me the opportunity to perform at prestigious events in London to showcase my talents and spread my culture around. I have been pursuing this dance form since I was five years old and am so glad that I have been able to continue dancing despite being in London. Additionally, I am a part of multiple UCL societies which have opened doors to various new experiences, including yoga, swimming and music.
Was it nerve-wracking to move to a new city?
I was definitely quite nervous when I first moved, London being one of the busiest and most bustling cities. It’s safe to say I had a bit of a culture shock, but I’ve grown to love it. I have met some of the most wonderful people and have begun to feel at home in London now. I have gotten a grasp of how to navigate the city, manage on my own and face adversity independently.
How do you prefer to get around the city?
My favourite way to get around London is by either walking or taking the bus. Buses are very convenient and cost-effective, providing excellent connectivity throughout the city, which often makes it quick and easy to reach various destinations. I find walking enjoyable for short distances, while for longer journeys, I find the London Underground (Tube) extremely convenient.
Has it been easy to build up a community in London?
I was always scared that when I moved to London, I would feel very lonely and out of place. However, right from the start, I met such lovely and warm people who are now some of my closest friends. I made friends with people from all corners of the globe and diverse academic backgrounds, and it finally felt like I had met ‘my people’.
Do you have a plan for what you’d like to do next?
Once I graduate, I would love to work in London! I am highly enthusiastic about pursuing a career in the consultancy field and if not, I plan on doing a Master's, preferably somewhere in the United Kingdom.
UCL and India share a rich history of collaboration. Our connections span recruiting brilliant students, engaging with exceptional alumni, delivering transformative education and undertaking impactful research.
From 18-25 November 2023, a UCL delegation led by Professor Geraint Rees (UCL's Vice-Provost for Research, Innovation & Global Engagement) and Kirsty Walker (UCL's Vice-President for External Engagement) is visiting India to engage with key partners, prospective students and alumni to further strengthen our ties in the country.
Find out more about UCL’s collaborations with India.