Multi Story Edinburgh

Madhu - Class of 2021 - Edinburgh in lockdown, finding balance and multiple communities

November 24, 2021 The University of Edinburgh Season 2 Episode 21
Multi Story Edinburgh
Madhu - Class of 2021 - Edinburgh in lockdown, finding balance and multiple communities
Show Notes Transcript

Each episode is a snapshot, a moment, a sneak inside the minds of our graduates. As the world emerges from pandemic paralysis, are our Class of 2021 feeling inspired or inhibited, glad or gloomy, chaotic or calm? In this episode we meet Madhu who has just completed her MSc in Bioinformatics.

Welcome to Season 2, a little bit of the same but quite a lot different. Each month we meet five more graduates from the Class of 2021. Subscribe now and find out what everyone is up to and how they feel about life, the last 12 months and future plans.

All opinions expressed are those of the individual and do not necessarily reflect those of the University of Edinburgh. 

Multi Story Edinburgh has been created and produced by the Alumni Relations team at the University of Edinburgh. If you are interested in telling your story, please get in touch and let's talk.

Music: Since When by Mise Darling from freemusicarchive.org 
Artwork: Vector created by redgreystock from www.freepik.com

[Theme music] 

Sonia  0:09  This is a snapshot, a moment, a sneak inside the minds of our graduates. This is season two, Class of 2021. A little bit the same, but quite a lot different.

Madhu  0:21  So hi, I'm Madhu-- Madhubharathy. I did my masters in Biotechnology at the University of Edinburgh. I just graduated last month and right now I'm searching for jobs. That's me right now. I'm from India. So I moved back home last month, right after I graduated. So I'm at home right now with my family and friends. And with my job hunting, where I am, well I guess I just started, so not so good [laughs]. But I think I didn't want to come back home, I wanted my family to come back for my graduation. But during the pandemic, nobody could travel from India to the UK, it was much easier and feasible for me to go back home. You know how things work at uni, especially if you're doing a master's, you can't have regular conversations with family. So I think we became really distant over the last few months. So it's good that I'm back. So I think after my undergrad, I was really clueless, I knew I had a lot of passion for the subject that I was studying. But I was super clueless as to what to do next. And there weren't a lot of jobs available for undergrads back home. So when I was thinking I came across universities in the UK offering one year master's, since I'd already taking a gap year, I didn't want to do like a two year master's. So I thought one year master's sounds good. It makes up for the gap that I took. And then I looked at Edinburgh, and I was like, okay, no, I need to be there. Yeah, I think I really enjoyed the lockdown Edinburgh, because there wasn't a lot of people, I feel like I got to explore the city by myself. Wherever I went, it was calm, it was soothing. I love my walks around the city, especially up the castle, to the meadows, just sit there, read a book, maybe have hot chocolate from the cafe near meadows. At Edinburgh, definitely I felt like home. I think I've met amazing people. The city just has a very warm environment and the people were really kind. I honestly didn't get a lot of time to reflect on what I was doing, what I would like to do, it was just me constantly bashing between assignments and time. I did not get any ideas to what to do next. So only after I finished my dissertation, I sat down and I was like, okay, now you're done, what do you want to do next?  And so I would really like to work in an industry, I don't want it to be research based, I want to be in the manufacturing side or the technology side of it. And that's what-- that's the kind of job jobs I'm looking at as well. But yeah, let's see how it goes. Right now I'm okay with any job [laughs]. I'll take the first job that I get [laughs]. 

I don't believe in landing in 'the' job immediately. Because I know that I'm a fresher, I still have a long way to go, I have a lot of things to learn. So I am okay doing-- taking things slow. So I want to be somewhere first, and then reach towards my goal, ultimately. I'd like to have a job before I actually graduate, like they've announced the graduation dates, I wou-- I would like to have a job before that. But I'm okay with not having one before that as well. I really don't want to stress about it. I thought I was a long term planner, but apparently I'm not because I'm seriously not thinking about anything beyond the next two months. Right now I'm at the point where okay, everything is uncertain, you don't know when you are going to come out of this pandemic, so you might as well not plan [laughs]. I spent a lot of time with myself, so I got a lot of time to reflect on myself, where I stand and the things I like to do, the things I would not like to do. So I think from that point of view, it was really a good journey, because I was always around people and suddenly I was put in a foreign city with not a lot of people around and that was a good time to be with myself. And so right now I'm focusing on myself, trying to be more healthy, eat more healthy, move my body, hang out with people I like and then also apply for jobs, so I'm not going to focus just on that.

I could have done a lot of things better. I think I lost connection with a lot of people because I didn't know how to balance between them both. So yeah, that's what I think when I sit down and think of the last one year. We had a nice group around my course mates, we had a nice group around my accommodation and then there was people at the gym, and then there was people at the company where I did my dissertation. So I was surprised that during a tough time like this, I was able to meet so many people and actually form good communities, healthy communities where people motivate each other and really friendly. I think the whole lockdown got to everybody, so everybody had a chance to become a nicer version of themselves. So when they met other people, it was, it was harmonical-- it was, it was a nice thing to be with people. So I think everybody appreciated that. And so we were really able to form good communities because of that. It's, it's so important. You, you, you definitely need at least one person who you can rely upon when you're away from home. And the more the better, the more the merrier. So if you have a community, it's, it's definitely much more easier for you to balance. And even if you feel like you might not be doing things, right, you have somebody to support you, have somebody to ask. So it always helps to have a community, a good community around you, to make you feel at home.

Sonia  6:13  We also asked our graduates to share a place, somewhere special, somewhere we can get together when all this is finished.

Madhu  6:21  So I started doing yoga very early in life. So I have this very special Ashram that I go to, its very near to where I live. It's down the hill, so you get to see the hills and the-- it's basically in a valley. And it's extremely calm. And if you just go sit there, you become meditative. And that's the kind of space that it is. So if I would like to go somewhere for a long or short stay or whatever, gather people around and just be myself, that would be the place. But sometimes you need an environment which stimulates that in you, it can't just happen. So just like if you want to dance, you can't just dance anywhere you need a dance floor, sometimes you need that push. So that place is where I go when I want that push and when I think that I'm going away from you know my values.

Sonia  7:18  Thank you for listening. Join us next time for another graduate and another story.

Kirsten 7:36  If this conversation has raised more questions than answers, then you might find it helpful to speak to someone. Speaking with a careers consultant can be a great way to get some answers. Simply log on to MyCareerHub to make an appointment and don't forget that you can still use everything on offer from the Careers Service as a recent graduate. 

Transcribed by https://otter.ai