Please tell us about yourself

Rochana Devi is studying for an MA Knitwear, here at the School of Textiles and Design.

We caught up with Rochana to ask her how she was coping with the transition of living in India to living and studying in Scotland.

“It was a big step for me to come here and I’ll admit, a little daunting at first.” said Rochana.

“I’d been to the UK a couple of times but never Scotland; when my flight landed into Edinburgh Airport at 7am in the morning, last September, I did feel quite nervous.

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What did you study?

I did my Bdes in Knitwear design from National Institute of Fashion Technology and Master’s degree in Knitwear from Heriot-Watt University.

How was the experience in Scotland?

It was a long day but I finally made it to the School of Textiles and Design in the Scottish Borders Campus, Galashiels. There were a few activities laid on for the international students – quite a lot of us, from all over the world, so it was great to get to know them. I was so happy to meet some other students from India too – it really made me feel at home and I settled in pretty well, over the next few weeks. The main difference between India and here (apart from the weather, of course) is that it’s so quiet, with a lot less people and hustle and bustle. I find the peace and quiet perfect for focusing my mind on my studies. It’s also so green here, the countryside is amazing.

The School of Textiles and Design has lots of facilities and I know that I’d be using the same equipment in my chosen career as what I’m using here at the School, which has great benefits and is what attracted me to this University in the first place. I use the Shima machines a lot and it’s invaluable having access to these. I remember when I was researching places to study, I  somehow landed on the School’s YouTube channel and I watched a lot of the films and absolutely pictured myself studying here.”

We asked Rochana what had been the highlight, so far…

“The best thing is definitely the beautiful friends I have made. I did not expect that I would make such strong connections but I’ve made friends for life. However, the access we have to the tutors is great and the environment means you can really focus on the work. I’ve really developed and grown as a person and I’m proud of that.

What are you doing currently?

Iam on a two month training in knitwear production for Sportking India limited’s brand sportking and designed a small capsule collection(3-4 garments)