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Student Profile - La Ni

Na Li

"Parks are nearly everywhere which is great for picnics and outdoor running. I’ve travelled to a lot of places in UK, like Scotland, North Ireland and other cities in England. The view and sightseeing within UK is diverse and attractive. Train, coach and flights are all available in Southampton which is really convenient for travelling around."


Nationality: Chinese

Programme: MSc Leadership and Management in Health and Social Care

Term: 2018-19

Click on the question and answer link below to read more about Na Li's Southampton experience:

Question and answer session (click to expand)

Where are you from and what did you do before coming to the University of Southampton?

I come from Zhejiang province in China and have four years’ work experience in Red Cross Society of China local branch before the postgraduate study in UK.

What attracted you to study at the University of Southampton?

University of Southampton owns high reputation and ranks top 100 universities worldwide. The university locates in the south of UK which has nice weather and also is close to London which is convenient for travelling.

Were you affected by culture-shock? What were the biggest differences between here and your own country?

I wasn’t affected by culture-shock because I think UK is a country with diversity and this is what I felt while living here: all kinds of ethnicity and international food everywhere. There are two things impressed me in the beginning of settling in. The first one is the politeness and patience of people here. People greet with every service staff and also wait patiently to be served. This reflects the local living attitude: enjoy every moment. The second one is lots of green lands which are perfect for all kinds of outdoor activities and provide the opportunity to get close to the nature.

Did the university assist in the process of settling in?

Both the faculty and accommodation staff provide lots of help in the beginning of the academic year. My faculty organized a special course for international students introducing local cultures and academic skills which is quite helpful. The staff in reception and student life team are available 24/7. I remember in the first week living in Halls, staff popped in our flat to welcome us.

What are the best things about your course?

The best thing about my course is the structured content which leads to healthcare management step by step. My favourite module is Leading Others because it encompasses theoretical and practical experiences. We spent two days outside of the campus doing different tasks to explore how to lead a team.

What are the other people like on your course?

Nearly half of my classmates are local part-time students who come from NHS or health-related industry. Another half are international students from different countries. This provides the opportunity to get to know the health systems in each country during and after classes.

Have you used any of the academic services available to students?

The academic skills hub in the library is very useful. The staff there provide support for all kinds of academic skills like database searching and referencing. The library also provides one to one tutorials which can give feedback on academic writing. They helped me with lots of academic writing problems. 

What do you like about the university campus?

Highfield campus is the main campus in Southampton and there are a theater and a pub inside the campus which is very convenient. The amazing thing is that there is even a food market within the campus every week.

What is it like living in halls of residence?

The facilities in halls is great. There are common rooms, study and entertainment rooms in halls which is quite convenient. The staff in reception and student life team operate 24/7 which can meet all I need.

Have you tried any activities for the first time or joined any clubs and societies?

Actually, I didn’t do much sport at home, but I become to love sport here. The gym is convenient both on the campus and the student halls. I also tried water skiing for the first time in the beginning of my course which is really fascinating.

What do you enjoy doing in Southampton and the surrounding area? 

A variety of stores and restaurants are available in Southampton, including IKEA. Parks are nearly everywhere which is great for picnic and outdoor running. I’ve travelled to a lot of places in UK, like Scotland, North Ireland and other cities in England. The view and sightseeing within UK are diverse and attractive. Train, coach and flight are all available in Southampton which is really convenient for travelling around.

What are your favourite aspects of British culture?

My favourite aspect of British culture is the living attitude---enjoy every moment. People here do gardening and have outdoor activities during weekends. It seems people create, enjoy and appreciate those living experiences.

Do you feel there are positive gains from moving and studying abroad?

There are definitely positive gains from studying abroad. The first gain is to experience a different culture which would have impacts on developing better thinking patterns. The second gain is to develop life skills. Take me as an example, I developed cooking skills here and found the joy of cooking, which is not likely to happen if I stayed at home.

How have the people you have met at Southampton changed your life?

By interacting with people I met here, I developed a deeper understanding of different cultures and how best to interact with people from unfamiliar cultures. This would be a valuable networking skill in my future life.

What type of funding did you receive and what advice would you give to students looking to apply for a scholarship/bursary?

I received Chevening Scholarship which is aimed at people who have work experience and aim to become leaders in the future. I think it is a wise idea to visit school website to know more about scholarships because there are various scholarships available.

What do you plan on doing with your degree once you have finished your studies?

I’ve applied for healthcare management consultant and management trainee in hospitals. I’ll return home to develop my career because I think healthcare management is needed is China.

What are you most proud of from your time so far at the University of Southampton?

On one hand, I’m proud of making full use of time both in study and in exploring UK culture. On the other hand, making friends from different countries, many of whom share similar values and goals with me, is quite valuable.

What do you think you have gained from your time here that you wouldn’t have if you had decided to decline your offer?

The first thing developed throughout the course is academic knowledge which gives me insights of various aspects of healthcare management. The second thing developed here is critical analysis and evidence-based skills which is paramount not only to career development but also to lead a life.

Geography, Environmental and Ocean Sciences

Environmental and Life Sciences

Art and specialist management

Culture and creativity

Education, law and mathematics


Engineering and technology


Medical science and health-related

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Watch Southampton students Yan Zhang and Jenny Yang talk about their experiences of life at Southampton

Before coming to the UK to pursue a Master’s degree, I had been working for 4 years in an international bank in China. My journey in Southampton so far has been a wonderful experience, helping me discover new skills and become better both personal and professional wise.

*QS World University Rankings 2019

**QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2019

***Awards for our Careers and Employability Service include: Nomination Bright Futures - Most Collaborative Careers Service of the Year Award (2019); NUE Most Improved Commitment to Employability (2017); AGR Development Award: Best Preparation for Work Initiative (2017)

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