Ajda Kriselj, Speech and Language Science MSc
1. Why did you decide to study your programme?
After I finished my undergraduate degree in cognitive science during the pandemic, it was hard to find a job, so I decided to increase my employability opportunities by studying further. I decided to pursue a Master’s degree that will enable me to qualify as a speech and language therapist because I knew I wanted to do something more practical and people-facing. I am very happy I decided to go for it!
2. Why did you apply to study at UCL?
I was living in London during the pandemic with my partner, so I decided to find a London-based university for my masters. I decided for UCL because I liked the research focus and world-class expert lecturers. I also always wanted to go here so when I got accepted, I was very happy!
3. What do/did you find inspiring at UCL and why?
I was inspired by my course mates, who were all very driven, intelligent, and innovative. I was inspired by the lecturers, who always gave their best to provide us with cutting-edge evidence for what we do. I was inspired by the international community, which is truly diverse at UCL.
4. What did you enjoy most about your degree programme?
I really enjoyed the practical aspects of my degree, such as the varied placement experiences and workshops with my course mates. I enjoyed that the amount of contact hours was very high, which kept me constantly challenged and engaged with the course. I really enjoyed learning about the neuroanatomy and phonetics as well as the current evidence-based approaches and techniques that are used in speech and language therapy.
5. What is your fondest memory of your time at UCL?
Meeting all these incredible people in my course which will join the speech and language therapy workforce with me and so we will continue to support each other even after graduating.
6. What do you find interesting about your field of study and what inspires you?
I love working with people, and therefore learning about how I can help them get back their voice, improve their speech, be able to eat and drink again, and helping them to participate in everyday activities was very valuable. I am inspired by the new discoveries in the field and the amazing contribution that speech and language therapists can have for people’s lives.
7. Do you think studying at UCL Faculty of Brain Sciences is a good investment?
Yes, I think a degree from UCL will give you the competitive advantage when joining the employment pool, especially in speech and language therapy. The graduates from our programme are very sought after and secure a job very soon after graduating. I definitely feel that mentioning you went to UCL gives you extra credit which is fair considering how tough it is to get in!
8. What are your plans once you've completed your current programme of study?
At the moment I am interviewing for jobs in mainstream schools and clinics, where I hope to work as a newly qualified practitioner. I would like to perhaps pursue a PhD later in my career, but for now, I will try to gather as much experience as I can in different areas of speech and language therapy practice.
9. What would be your advice for current students?
Enjoy your student years, join societies, go traveling, and make the most of the resources that UCL has to offer! When you finish, you will miss the freedom that being a student offers you. Also, take advantage of the fact that you live in London where everything is close by, for example go see musicals, participate in guest lectures at different universities and enjoy the many free museums and libraries.