Making the move to London? Q&A with 3 current LBS students

By Alex Hurd, MiM & GMiM Student Recruitment Associate

Every year a diverse international pool of talent arrive in London to study at LBS. I spoke to 3 current Early Careers students to get their insights on London and how they have been balancing their studies and social activities in an action-packed year.


Ruby Pak
, MiM2021

Ruby was born in Hong Kong, grew up in Beijing, and then immigrated to Canada with her family.

What was the most daunting part of moving to London for you?
I think the most intimidating part of moving to any new place for me is meeting people and building a social network. Socialising in a foreign country forces me to step outside of my comfort zone, which is like the feeling I had during freshman year of college.

What is your current living situation? Any tips for people looking?
“I was able to find a studio flat by myself and the place is within a 15-minute walk from the LBS campus. The apartment hunting and rental process went pretty well for me, without too many complications. I asked some of my friends who have lived in London for their advice, and many of them recommended property websites, which was a great place to start.

Can you share some advice and tips on moving here?
“1. Arrive in London early. Leave some time to explore the neighbourhood and the LBS campus before school starts.
2. Start making connections with your LBS student cohort before coming to London, so that you can help each other out with questions concerning the moving process.
3. Familiarise yourself with the map and different modes of transportation in London and apply for an Oyster card.”

Any tips on how to manage your studies/extracurricular/social life at LBS?
Since I was introduced to many student clubs, extracurricular activities, career resources, and course work within the first two weeks, I struggled to manage time efficiently. However, I realised that it was okay and normal to feel a little overwhelmed in the beginning. After familiarising myself with all aspects of student life at LBS, I started to make a priority list consisting of coursework, job search, and extracurricular activities. Job applications and academics are my two priorities, so I would always schedule my time around them. In order to avoid burnout, I have also dedicated Sunday to be my rest day where I take the entire day off without doing any work. Therefore, I am motivated to finish all of my tasks for the week by Saturday.

What has been your favourite social part of LBS so far?
Besides MiM bonding events hosted by the school, there are a variety of virtual activities organised by the student clubs at LBS. I am always excited to find out about new activities on CampusGroup, which is the site that lists daily activities hosted by different organisations. Personally, I am interested in culinary things, so my favourite activities include some of the live cooking sessions co-hosted by LBS’ foodies club and regional clubs. Another one of my favourite social activities is the self-guided tours organised by our MiM student representatives. I liked how we were randomly selected into groups of six to explore the city.

What has been your favourite London experience this term?
“Despite the pandemic, I still got to explore the city by taking time to walk around the neighbourhood. I especially enjoyed the Christmas lightings and festive spirit around the city. I also love the variety of local cafés and restaurants located in the LBS neighbourhood, and all of these places are within walking distance. I also discovered many European dishes and sweets that I have never tried before.”


Litao Deng
, MiM2021

Litao was born in Tianjin and raised in Beijing, China.

What was the most daunting part of moving to London for you?
I had some difficulties finding a great flat to live in. I had to find an apartment before I came here, and I didn’t have a good idea what London was like. I managed to get a video tour, but I did not get to see the apartment in person before arriving.

What is your current living situation? Any tips for people looking?
“I live just one minute away from campus in the Baker Street area. I live in a 2-bed apartment with someone I did not know beforehand! I share with one other person from LBS also an MiM2021 student. We both had the same alumni interview and we both knew we had been accepted at the end of February, so we reached out to each other. It’s kind of amazing really!”

Can you share some advice and tips on moving here?
“I can give some suggestions about agencies and websites to find a really good apartments. As we are international students and we both didn’t know much about London, but they were really helpful. If possible, live close to the School. It’s good to be able to meet up with other students off the course and I know a lot of students live near campus and meet up more frequently.

Any tips on how to manage your studies/extracurricular/social life at LBS?
“Yeah, that’s quite a tricky part! The coursework was harder and heavier than we expected. We have learnt a lot about that. The most efficient way to manage all these things is to try and focus on specific things for a period of time. I personally would say job hunting is really important. Studies are also important but maybe utilise your evenings and weekends for that? Remember you have come here to do a lot of things not to just have fun.

Secondly, with the MiM there are a lot of group assignments. If you are really busy with job applications and really important club social events, you need to have efficient communication with your group. You need to let them know you might not always be available.”

What has been your favourite social part of LBS so far?
“I really like what the MiM social representatives do here. They have organised a lot of good events like the Secret Santa and other social things for us.”

What has been your favourite London experience overall this term?
“I really love London and I think the most beautiful season here is winter. All the lights are up, and it has best Christmas atmosphere in the world! I also recommend watching the sunset at Primrose hill which is part of Regents park [which is right next to the LBS campus]. A lot of students who live in the area head there to watch the sunsets and it is really beautiful. I think there are also a lot of great restaurants – for example one called ‘Opso’ which was recommended by LBS Professor Kostis Christodoulou and is an amazing Greek style restaurant.”


Nguissaly Gueye
, MFA2021

Nguissaly was born raised in Senegal. She has been located in Montreal, Canada for the past five years.

What was the most daunting part of moving to London for you?
“It has always been my dream to study or live in London, I don’t know why. I’d visited London a few times before as I did an exchange in the UK, so it wasn’t daunting for me. I love this city as it has a good energy, and I am an art lover so there are a lot of things for me to do here.”

What is your current living situation? Any tips for people looking?
“I live in St Johns Wood near to where the Beatles took that famous photo. I need three other people to join me so I can take that photo! My advice for someone in this position is, where possible, use any connections you might have in London to help. If you know a classmate who is already in London speak to them, visit them where possible so they can show you round. We liked the apartment, but we had not seen the neighbourhood and luckily it turned out to be nice. But I think picking a good area is important. Start looking early and look at which neighbourhoods are closer to the school as the city is so big.”

Any tips on how to manage your studies/extracurricular/social life at LBS?
“My advice would be to manage your time perfectly because the first year is super intense, you go through recruitment, you’re living in a new city and you want to meet new people. Prioritise and know it is important to take breaks and go out and see London. Meet your classmates as you tend to create those bonds in that first term. As we have been told in our time management classes, I have learnt to say ‘no’ a lot. I said ‘no’ to a lot of things, but it is not just about looking for a job. It is important to have a balance and also get the full experience of meeting people and seeing the city.”

What has been your favourite social part of LBS so far?
“My favourite part of LBS is being involved in the Black in Business (BiB) Club. I am the VP Community Liaison, and it is enabling me to be a part of something great. I thought there was a lack of West Africans and black people on the programme and I wanted to help LBS. Being part of a new club is a great experience and it helps me achieve this goal. My role is to create the community and make sure which students are involved and are here at LBS.  I create links with clubs, with faculty and staff and it’s super exciting. It has enabled me to be learn a lot and be part of a great cause that I really cherish. It also has been great to network as I work with a lot of MBA students, I can talk to them about their experiences and ask for help with recruitment.”

What has been your favourite London experience overall this term?
“I just love walking around London. Sometimes I just walk for an hour with friends, walking from Regents Park down to Oxford Street. I have been able to go to the British Museum and as I am someone who loves art, these kinds of things are good for my soul. London is such an artistic city to just look at. I have walked down to the Thames and gone east to Shoreditch and it’s amazing to see art and graffiti everywhere in that area.”

If you have any questions or want to find out more about what it’s like to move to London, please feel free to reach out to our Student Ambassadors.

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