Postcard From...Florida | Colleges

Burning the midnight oil

Winning the University of South Florida’s (USF) first Abdul Kalam PhD Fellowship in 2016 has put me on an exciting academic journey at USF’s Muma College of Business in Tampa, Florida. My research focuses on design science and the development of interactive digital technology in the realm of informal learning and teaching.

Each day is hectic as I move from classes to the library to meetings with professors and back to my shared apartment for more study and research late into the night using the library’s online resources. Submission deadlines are often flexible, but professors expect a high standard of work.

Faculty-student interaction is high. While some classes target skill development, others target development of a high level of understanding and domain knowledge. Each class is typically two-to-four hours long but often exceeds the duration, based on discussion the faculty member feels is required. Lectures are extremely thorough, interactive and immersing. Professors are approachable and take extra care to interact individually.

Burning the midnight oil

My weekends are taken up by assignments and select readings for classes. I have not been able to indulge in what most undergraduate and graduate students do — tour the city, visit Orlando and Miami, watch matches or enjoy the facilities at the university — from the world-class gymnasium to the swimming pool and many indoor games. During the year-end holiday break however, I did manage a hiking tour of state parks. I hope to do more of all that now that I have completed a semester and got into the groove of campus life.

USF offers a range of services and facilities and you will also find students working in these offices. There are several convenient places on the campus to grab a quick bite and catch up with friends and faculty.

The campus is beautiful, spread across 1,562 acres with plenty of trees and an ideal atmosphere for academic research.

USF is culturally versatile, with students from 140 countries. It has 600 student organisations and, not surprisingly, the Students of India Association is among the most active and popular! Though USF organises many cultural events throughout the year, I do miss my alma mater IIT’s Tech Fest and Mood Indigo.

Avijit Sengupta is a Ph.D student at the University of South Florida.

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Printable version | Oct 15, 2021 7:11:34 PM |

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