Graduate story: Yi Xin Lee, Class of 2021
Here at Dulwich College Beijing, we continue the tradition of telling DCB alumni stories to showcase their life journey, learning, and achievements to benefit the DCB community.
In this episode, Cecilia T finds out more about class of 2021 Yi Xin Lee’s experience of community at DCB, her university journey process and her current leadership role.
Yi Xin Lee, DCB Class of 2021
- University College London
Share a memorable experience or moment from your DCB years
The most memorable moments from my DCB years are the ones that really brought together our school community. Looking back, I remember really enjoying that one assembly right before Christmas break where the whole school would gather in the Wodehouse Theatre to watch House Drama. The excitement and buzz in the air while waiting to watch the hard work of your friends come to life was incredible. Definitely make sure to treasure those moments of community at DCB.
What were your favourite extracurricular roles or activities at DCB?
I joined a lot of Model United Nations (MUN) related extracurricular activities, and the trips we would go on for different conferences were always some of the highlights of my school year. Through MUN, I was able to meet new people from all over Asia. I’m still friends with many of those I met through MUN conferences and this experience also helped me make new friends at university. It was also a great way to broaden my general knowledge and improve my public speaking.
Why did you decide to apply for university admission in the UK in general and University College London (UCL) in particular? What factors were most important in determining your “fit” university?
I wanted to go to university in a city centre, so I applied to London as I knew it would be a great place for me to experience living independently in a big city and exploring the many things there are to do here. I visited a few London universities before I applied and I liked the UCL campus the most. Its facilities are fantastic and there are a plethora of libraries and cafés scattered around the city so all your education and social needs are met. The location of the campus is also fantastic being situated right in the heart of the city. I also looked into the courses each university offered and thought that the social science department in UCL would be the best fit for my interests based on its content and the way the lectures/seminars were scheduled.
How did you end up selecting your major/course of study?
I picked Sociology because I was always interested in social issues, especially racism and gender inequality. After reading through what the UCL Sociology BSc courses would be like, I found it would allow me to focus on my interests. I also talked to their representatives during the university fair at DCB to get more information about the course as well as the type of projects I would have to do.
Looking back on the process, would you have done anything differently?
I would have asked people in older years, such as DCB alumni, about their experience at university, specifically in London. When moving to a new city, there is a lot that you need to do to prepare for the culture shock you might experience and to adapt to living alone in a new city. For anyone wishing to move to London, feel free to reach out to me! My general advice would be make sure you bring enough layers of clothing (it gets very cold during winter!), be proactive with making friends and join a cultural society so you don’t feel too homesick.
What is your favourite thing about UCL?
My favourite thing about UCL is how the university is able to create a sense of community. There are so many different activities that will connect you with new and interesting people at university. You’ll meet new friends from your dorm, your course mates, join different societies – even just when you’re doing your laundry. UCL also has a lot of its own cafés and will even incentivise you with free pizza if you go at a certain time, so you’re bound to bump into someone you know.
Tell us a little bit about some internships or jobs you’ve had (if applicable)
I did a Spring Insight Week for L’Oréal during April and it was really eye-opening. I learnt a lot about the commercial world and gained insight into the operations at a FTSE 100 company. In particular, we learned about how the different departments involved at the company need to cooperate, such as digital marketing, commercial and supply chain. It was also really interesting to learn about the rise of technology use in the fashion world.
What are you busy with these days?
As it is currently the summer holidays, I have been spending my time preparing for upcoming events in anticipation of the school year. In my role as Vice President for the Asian and British Cultural University Students Society (ABACUS), for example, I am working with the team to plan out our freshers week events, which will welcome over 1,000 students. This sounds daunting but the leadership experience at DCB has definitely prepared me well for any event-organising activity I’ve had to do at university.
What’s the best thing to do in London?
Eating, for sure. There is so much good food in London – every type of cuisine. I would recommend finding the best restaurants when visiting by looking at reviews or asking anyone you know who lives in London. I definitely recommend Circolo Popolare, if you’re a fan of Italian cuisine!
If you could have a superpower, what would it be?
Probably teleportation because I would be able to go from London back home easily.
What’s your favourite food?
Sushi all day.
What’s your all-time favourite movie?
The Intern with Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro. It’s really wholesome.