UCL History student Annabel Geene awarded Undergraduate Scholarship for Excellence

16 November 2021

Huge congratulations to Annabel Geene who has been awarded the Undergraduate Scholarship for Excellence from the Faculty of Social and Historical Sciences. We chatted to Annabel about her award and her studies.

Annabel Geene

1. Hi Annabel, thanks so much for chatting with us. Congratulations on being awarded the Undergraduate Scholarship for Excellence from the Faculty of Social and Historical Sciences! Can you tell us a little more about the award and your reaction to receiving it?

Thank you so much! Honestly I was very shocked when I received the award. I was not expecting it at all. It really is a true honour. When my personal tutor told me a few weeks ago I had been nominated for the award I was already quite shocked and found it hard to believe, but then receiving it was something else! I would like to take this opportunity to thank the History Department, who have allowed me to grow and develop my writing skills so much. I’d also like to take this opportunity to tell people a little bit more about my story and background in History. The progress I have made since the start of my first year is really enormous and it is something I did not think I was capable of achieving. If someone had told me two years ago I would be answering questions about a history scholarship two years from now, I really never would have believed it. The reason why I want to share this with incoming first and second years is because I want them to know that it is okay if they are doubting their skills and feel a bit insecure at first. UCL is an amazing place, but it can be intimidating at times. The best advice I can give is engage with your studies, find what you enjoy (because it will become a passion instead of just another essay) and talk to your seminar tutors. This will help you find your light and voice in your writing. I would never have been able to find confidence in my writing if it had not been for the UCL History Department, the seminar tutors and lecturers. 

2. You are now in your third and final year  – what have you enjoyed most about your time at UCL so far, and what advice would you give to students starting their studies this year? 

I am now in my third year of undergraduate studies and honestly, I have found the History department at UCL absolutely amazing! The seminar tutors and lecturers are so passionate about their work and are very encouraging and helpful to students pursuing their own research. I really enjoyed the curriculum of second year History. I think that UCL History really offers the perfect balance between providing students with enough freedom to pursue their own research and enough support and guidance when needed. The advice I would give to incoming first and second years is the following:

  • Engage with the content you are most interested in early on in the year, you will have few but big deadlines, so it’s important that you find a topic and angle that interests you.
  • Do not stress too much if you do not understand all the content at first. The course will come together at the end of Term. 
  • Go see your seminar tutor to discuss your essay plans and ask any questions you have!

3. Looking ahead, what are you most looking forward to about your remaining time at UCL, and beyond?

I am most looking forward to the entirety of the UCL/London experience this year. After the COVID year last year, I am very happy to be back on campus and in London. UCL just really is such an inspiring environment with endless opportunities. I look forward to spending my last year here with friends and just enjoying London with them. However, I also know that third year will be tough in terms of studies, so all I can say is first and second years make sure you make the most out of your London experience your first two years. In terms of my future plans, I am still deciding. I am strongly considering pursuing a Master's in History (most likely in Intellectual History) after I finish my Undergraduate Studies. Who knows maybe I’ll stay at UCL for another year!