The summer of 2018 marked the end of my time at Brasenose, where I spent three of the happiest years of my life studying Philosophy, Politics and Economics. Having become so accustomed to college life, to be thrust out into the world once more was certainly daunting, but my time at Brasenose was incredibly helpful when it came to planning and taking my next steps.
I loved every element of my course, and was incredibly lucky to have a set of tutors who offered me a huge level of support and insight when I decided I wasn’t quite done with education yet. My interests in moral and political philosophy had solidified that I wanted to change the world for the better with my life and work. My studies in the social sciences, on the other hand, presented me with a set of tools that could be applied to the real world to do this. After some research and a series of highly useful conversations with my tutors, I elected to apply to study for an MSc in Development Studies at the LSE. Thanks in no small part to their continued assistance through my application process I was accepted, and spent a highly interesting year learning about everything from global health to the intersection of environment and development. I even managed to wangle my way onto a course in philosophy and public policy to get my philosophical fix.
I greatly enjoyed my Masters but I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do next. There were many elements of development I saw as incredibly interesting and impactful, but my course had made me a bit sceptical of some of the major players in the development ‘industry’, and resultantly reticent about diving straight in to that domain. Not only this, but I simply couldn’t see myself donning a suit and turning up to a formal office job just yet. One of the things I loved about Brasenose was that it allowed me to unashamedly be myself, never once asking me to change. My time at college emphasised how important this was to me as a facet of my environment, and so I began to hunt for a job that would be as accepting of my genuine, somewhat odd, character as Brasenose was.
I have been incredibly lucky to have found that in my current job, working as a consultant for the non-profit Kaleidoscope Health and Care for those interested in having a look, and while I may be biased I would highly recommend doing so. I can be happy knowing the work I do is making an impact on people’s lives, while also being lucky enough to be in an environment full of smart, interesting and generally wonderful people who value and respect me for who I really am. I’ve been at Kaleidoscope almost four months now, and my assimilation has gone more smoothly than I ever could have hoped. That’s been in no small part due to my welcoming and relaxed colleagues, but I also place huge stock in the formative role Brasenose has played in enabling this. College helped me foster the confidence and sense of self which has allowed me to remain undaunted in the face of a completely new context and set of challenges, not to mention the host of incredibly impressive and accomplished people populating it.
Beyond providing me with the greatest educational experience I could have possibly imagined, Brasenose helped me grow and develop as a person in some amazing ways. While I’m absolutely loving my newfound adult existence I will always look back with fondness at my time at college, and am sure I wouldn’t be where I am today, or who I am today, without it.
By Theo Cox (formerly of Chatham & Clarendon Grammar School)