I graduated

I graduated… 4 months ago.

If there was an award for ‘posting content online way after the actual event’ then I’d definitely win it. here are photos from my graduation in july 2018 :’D

After 4 years of cramming and sleep deprivation, I graduated from University of Surrey (UK) with a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science. This degree was a stepping stone to get into medical school for me. Back in school, my A-levels (exams that students take in the last 2 years of school in the British education system) results weren’t good enough to apply straight into medicine. So I decided to pursue this bachelor’s degree first and use it for my medical school application last year.

I’m happy to say that I got accepted into a medical school (yay!) in which the course starts in January 2019. More on that in future blog posts. For now, let’s go back a little bit in time... to an exciting morning on Wednesday, 18 July, 2018 — the day of my graduation.


Hair & makeup artist + PHOTOGRAPHER

Since I’m such a noob at doing my hair and makeup, and at my parents’ request, I got a hair & makeup artist to make me look like less of a mutated potato. Her name is Olivia, and you can find her on instagram @oliviamillsmua and website. Thank you for making me look like a presentable potato!

We also got a photographer to capture this important milestone in my life. I know that the majority of students don’t hire a photographer for graduation but it’s very common in my home country, Thailand. Most Thai students even have a full-blown photoshoot before their actual graduation, haha. The photographer that captured and edited all the photos you see in this blog post is Melissa (note: I’ve made minor colour adjustments to a few pictures). You can find her on instagram @melissasnashfoldphotography and website. She’s very friendly and easygoing, and I liked how the photos turned out :) Thank you for your hard work!


Before the ceremony

My whole family came to my graduation day, along with a few precious family friends from Thailand. They traveled so far just to come show their support. I’m so grateful for them :’) Before the graduation ceremony, we had some spare time so we took some photos at the hotel my dad and brother were staying at and around the university campus.

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The Graduation Ceremony

The graduation was held at Guildford Cathedral, which was right next to the main university campus. It’s really pretty inside. Oh guess what… I almost threw away my degree certificate (!!). Yep… so each graduand had a bag filled with documents and bits and bobs on their seat. One of them was an unlabelled white envelope wrapped over a hard cardboard. I assumed it was there to prevent other papers from crumpling (I know, so stupid) and made a mental note to throw it out later. Then a classmate sitting next to me opened up their envelope, and it turned out to be the degree certificate inside (!). Phew, close call, haha.

As for the ceremony, I thought I wouldn’t be nervous to get on stage to do the whole shaking hand thing. I mean all I had to do was walk up a few steps, shake hands with HRH The Duke of Kent and another lady and walk down the steps. No biggie right? But why was my heart beating so fast when I was lining up with my classmates by the stage? XD Maybe I was scared that I’d trip on the steps. Or it was the pressure of having all eyes on you the whole time. Thankfully, everything went smoothly, yay. Melissa also captured the perfect moment I shook hands with the Duke of Kent. Great timing, Melissa :D (I’m still not sure if it’s HRH but after googling his name and comparing his photos to the one above, I think it’s him ^^”).


After the ceremony

 

 

Friends & lecturers

We all know I’m not the most sociable person out there so I’m very grateful to everyone who has kept in touch with me throughout our time in university. I wrote a little bit about each friend (and lecturer) I bumped into that day below.

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Celebratory Reception

After the ceremony, we were invited into this huge tent with snacks, drinks, live music and other fun things (like a chocolate fountain!).

 

 

Derping around in town

There were two iconic statues in town centre and being the playful potato that I am, I copied their poses :P My family joined in as well, haha. That was fun. Then I went to celebrate with my favourite drink in the entire universe… bubble tea!

Just an Asian girl in a graduation gown casually trying to mimic a statue in the middle of town centre, that’s all XD

Did I really graduate if I didn’t celebrate with bubble tea? :p Here’s my favourite person in town because he makes my favourite drink in the world. Thanks for always being cheerful and nice to me every time I need my bubble tea fix :’D


The celebration

In the evening, we celebrated at a restaurant called The Ivy Castle View. The food was nice but the people at the dinner were the ones that made my graduation day memorable.

 

 

The food

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Our waiter for the evening was named Chris (Kris?). He was amazing - very attentive, friendly, polite and made sure everything went smoothly. The food was good. I remembered the crispy duck salad was delicious.

 

 

My loved ones ♡

Okay this is where the cheesy part begins.. bear with me for a bit, haha :’)

To my dear parents - The two people who I want to thank the most are my mom and dad. Thank you for raising me up, taking care of me, giving me love and warmth and constantly supporting me from kindergarten and school to sixth form and university. If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I’m deeply sorry if I’ve caused you pain in the past. We are flawed creatures, all of us. During my time at this university, our relationship has gone up and down but I’m glad that we’ve learned from our mistakes (mostly me) and now we’re closer than ever. I’m happy and proud to be your daughter. I love you very much, mom and dad.

To my monkeys (Willy & Dara) - Thank you for being the most lovable brother and sister to me. Even if we annoy each other sometimes, you guys make my world so much brighter. Thank you for showing me love, in your own unique ways, especially during my rough times. It’s such a joy to watch you two monkeys grow up, and I enjoy how our conversations become more meaningful as you mature. Also, congrats to my brother for getting into King’s College, doing Computer Science. And good luck to my sister for your upcoming IGCSEs!

To my boyfriend (Akash) - My love, I could write pages and pages about you and how much you mean to me. For this post, I’ll focus on our relationship and university for now, okay? :’) You were the one that made my life at Surrey so enjoyable and filled with memorable moments. I will never forget those late night study sessions in the library with you, submitting assignments at the very last minute (oh god, we’re such procrastinators haha), stuffing our face with Pizzaman until we got fat (okay fine, it was mostly me who got fat cx) and that one time both of us were wearing face masks at 3 am and you made me instant noodles because I was hungry. :’) Thank you for dealing with this awkward lil’ potato for the past 4 years.

There were multiple times I wanted to give up on my studies and felt discouraged about my future but you would always have the right words to say to magically wipe my doubts and insecurities away. You always know how to make me feel better in any situation. I don’t know how you do it… but I’m eternally grateful for you, bby. You fill my life with so much happiness and love, and I’m so glad I found you in front that AP building 4 years ago. I hope I can bring you as much happiness as you bring to me. I love you, big poop.

 

 

Speeches

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Yep, my dad made everyone give a little speech. He’s that extra… But anyways, I’m so grateful for all the nice things everyone said to me and my family :’) To explain the first few ‘tearful’ photos, I may have said some ~emotional & heartfelt~ things and it made them tear up, including myself heh. I got too emotional when I talked about my parents, thanking them for everything they did for me. Gah, I’m such a crybaby.

 

 

All smiles :)


Thankful ♡

I have to admit… fitting about 90 photos into one blog post was quite a challenge. But a fun one. ^^”

To be honest (and cheesy), I really wouldn’t have gotten this far without these people. They all helped and supported me in different ways, and they shaped me to become who I am today. My life has become more wholesome lately because of them. I’m very thankful.

Aside from the people pictured above, I want to thank my other classmates, lecturers and staff at the university for treating me well the past 4 years. To tell the truth, there was a certain detrimental event relating to my mental health that has tainted my feelings for Surrey. I still have to deal with the consequences till now but things are getting better, and that’s what matters.

Nonetheless… thank you, University of Surrey, for all the memories. #foreversurrey

 

For my curious peeps, if you’re wondering where the university is… here’s a map :P

University of Surrey

Guildford, Surrey
GU2 7XH
United Kingdom

Website: surrey.ac.uk

 

Just a heads up… this is not the end of my ‘graduation shenanigans’ posts. *face palms* haha. My parents wanted to celebrate in Thailand with our relatives as well. It was a dinner with our close relatives and family friends on November 11. There were many photos from that event so I thought I’d post them on my blog. It’ll probably be more of a photo diary with less writing than this one. ^^’

When is/was your graduation?
How did you celebrate it?

Hi, I’m a potato that loves bubble tea, food and sarcasm. You can probably find me laughing at stupid things on the internet, stuffing my face with food or lifting heavy things at the gym. musingful is an online space where I enjoy documenting my lil’ potato life.