By Samer Hammoud, BSc Chemistry, Department of Chemistry
Being a seasoned third year chemist, it feels like an age ago when I asked myself that question. What I came up with? King’s is prestigious, rich in history, with world famous alumni who have played integral parts in ground-breaking scientific discoveries, revolutionised entertainment and propelled sport. To follow in the footsteps of revolutionary scientists such as Rosalind Franklin and John Frederic Daniell, who made contributions in understanding the structure of DNA and developed the first modern battery cell, respectively, was all too enticing to pass on.
I am a Londoner, and though I considered the possibility of moving out for university, I did have my heart set on staying in London. King’s is located right in the centre of the city, with its main campuses all within short distances of each other. It boasts spectacular views of the River Thames, from both Waterfront and Waterloo Bridge itself, which provides a scenic stroll when not packed with busy commuters. Southbank is a five-minute walk away, and Somerset House on campus, both perfect spots for lunch. And of course, the Maughan Library can’t go by unmentioned, a maze in itself, where you will both immerse and lose yourself (quite literally).
King’s had always boasted one of the highest employability rates, and rightly so. The opportunity to go to a university which was so successful in helping students find a career path was certainly one of the main factors in choosing it, especially for someone who was quite unsure about what career to embark on. Their careers services are invaluable, particularly for support in finding internships and work placements.
In terms of chemistry, well that was an easy decision. I see chemistry as the perfect balance between all the scientific disciplines, and that isn’t more so reflected at King’s. With experienced academics, who are experts in their respective fields, conducting world-leading research, in state of the art facilities. I knew going in, the course would be intense, but you do get a sense of fulfilment from it. Namely, from the invaluable transferrable skills gained; a defined skill set useful in any profession. More so, the chance to be the first of a new cohort of pure chemistry students in a rejuvenated chemistry department was all too appealing, being given the chance to follow in the footsteps of successful individuals before me.