An interview featuring one of our students with a young family that is living near College.

Tell us a bit about yourself:

I'm Chris, I'm married, we have one son, and our second child is due very soon! Before coming to College I worked as a Barrister and my wife worked in international student recruitment and marketing.

Why did you choose All Nations?

We had spoken to lots of people about which Bible College we should attend and sent off for prospectuses, but All Nations seemed to most clearly fit our training needs (we hope to be involved in Church Planting and other ministries in Japan) and we had several friends who had attended and recommended it to us.

How have you found studying at College?

It has surpassed my expectations! I found the initial adjustment of returning to studying more difficult than I expected, but an assessment early in the first term that was quickly returned helped me gain confidence and understand what was required of me.

I have really enjoyed the lectures and particularly the discussions that have often continued after the class has finished. The diversity of subjects covered is a real strength of the course here and having lecturers who have great experiences of different cultures means that every lecture is related to cross-cultural life and work.

Having said all that, the friendships that we have formed and the chance to be around other students who have experience of mission and really godly lives to learn from are probably the highlight.

How has it been studying as a parent?

We moved to our College flat 10 minutes drive from College when our son was 8 weeks old and started College when he was 12 weeks. Loads of our friends told us we were crazy, and we, and especially my wife was very apprehensive, but it has been brilliant.
We both find it hard to imagine a better place to have young children. There is such a community feel and he loves having lots of 'Aunties' and 'Uncles' to play with. We have had such support from all our friends and All Nations staff who really understand the pressures of having small children.

There are downsides, as we do have to be very disciplined in our studying, especially in the evenings when our son is asleep, to make sure that we fit it all in. This has meant that we see less of the social side of College, but we still feel involved and it is great to have a home that we can invite people who live in College to.

Our second child will be born before the end of our time at College, so we must think that having children here is OK!

Any other comments?

Before coming to College I had not appreciated just what a family it is. There are such great relationships between the staff and the students, especially because of the tutorial group system. We really share in one another's joys and sorrows and there has been a great sense of co-operation and learning together. We also pray for former students each week some of whom were at the College (or one of its predecessors) over 40 years ago. It's great to be part of such a family that is spread all over the world.

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