Christopher is a full-time student on the MSc Education (Higher Education) course. Previously he took up a master’s in public policy at the Central European University in Budapest and a BS Business Administration, University of the Philippines Diliman. his long-term plan is to become a full-time researcher or to work in development policy.
What do you most value about the teaching at the department?
In most of the courses, or papers as we call them at Oxford, a leading scholar on that day’s topic will most likely come in to teach the class. The level of expertise that one gets exposed to is nothing short of inspiring!
Why do you think it’s important to study education?
My answer is a cliché but the simplest response could be because a better world demands it. The reality is that undertaking further studies in the field of education requires some personal sacrifice for the greater good. Other fields may offer better monetary returns to the individual but, undoubtedly, education is essential to any prosperous, well-functioning, and inclusive society. As the saying goes: “If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.”
What’s the community like at the department?
The people I have met at the department are some of the most interesting and friendly folks I have ever come across. Particularly among my cohort, I am always amazed at the diversity of perspectives that they bring in our class discussions.
What’s your favourite thing about studying at the department?
There are actually two things: First, I’m not really a bookworm but the department library and the extensive resources that a top university offers could never give anyone an excuse to do poorly. The second thing is having the opportunity to tap a large pool of very talented people. Whatever research topic one would want to pursue, there is always somebody or at least something you could engage with.
What advice would you give to new postgraduate students on how they can get involved in the department community?
For those who will be pursuing the MSc in Education—never miss the Foundations of Education Research classes where all the students from the different pathways converge during the coffee breaks. It’s easy to meet new people from around the world, start a conversation, and let that bring you to unexpected collaborations.
How has your College aided your experience at Oxford?
I had the immense privilege of having our college library in St. Stephen’s House steps away from my own room and open 24 hours a day. When it’s freezing outside and you need to pull an all-nighter, having that kind of convenience goes a long way.