Liza, A-level student

Liza’s love of art and Europe led her to explore her options in terms of secondary school and further education. Lisa plans on going to university in the Netherlands, and making her dreams of developing herself as an artist a reality. This year, Liza is studying A-levels in Business, Economics, History and English Literature.

It was a very exciting decision for me to study GCSEs. I made it by myself, and only after that informed my parents. I really want to study and work abroad. I am interested in studying in the sphere of arts, and doing some filmmaking and photography. I really love Europe; I spent some time in my childhood there and the mentality really suits me. I also love English and I wanted to learn it to a better level than I could on the Russian programme. It was the combination of all these factors that pushed me to find a British school. I found Algorithm, which was the most suitable for me due to its location in the centre and good value for money. Many other schools are five days a week, and I couldn’t go to them full-time.

Last year, Liza made the decision to leave Russian school and to focus solely on her A-levels.

The programmes are very different in some subjects. For example, the British programme offers Business, which is very useful and many of my classmates love that. It’s easier to apply it to real life. In Russian school, there are more subjects and we try to study them in more depth, but they are very different. I compared Physics, Chemistry and Biology, and I loved the way that they’re represented in the British programme. I’ve never really studied science before; I always tried to sit on the last row and write poetry. Last year I started to love Science. I really loved Physics thanks to how our teacher presented the subject to us. Before Algorithm, I was bored by my Chemistry teacher, but last year I successfully passed all of my Science exams!

I really enjoy Algorithm; I love that it’s a small school and very friendly. I always feel confident and comfortable here. It’s not very strict, in terms of rules. I used to study in a normal school with very strict rules and guidance on uniform. I love that we have a small kitchen here, because sometimes I don’t have the money and time to go and eat out, and I can warm up my own food in the microwave.

Liza’s creativity extends beyond any one single form of art. Creative in every sense of the word, Lisa has varied interests and lots of experience in dance, photography, video production and poetry.  

I want to produce things – I don’t want to consume them. I want to do something that can inspire people. Maybe people can discover something within themselves, that they didn’t know they had inside. I am interested in art, media production, and I love the music industry. I think it’s good field for work and it’s developing very fast. I’d like to shoot music videos, and I’ve got some experience in that. My first experience was when I was 13, and I tried to shoot my own video. A lot of musicians use videos to tell their own story, and I wanted to shoot a video for poems which I had written. It’s not just reading something, it’s more of a performance. I also filmed a video for a friend’s band. I feel very impressed that I can just grab a camera and make something from nothing, how images from my head can become images that other people can see. I think the career of a film director is beautiful – you can create a vision from nothing – from your head – and millions of people can see it!

There are three things that make me happy. Firstly, dancing. I spend 5 or 6 days a week dancing. It’s my passion and gives me energy. I write poetry, which I know isn’t a cool thing to say. I published a small book of poems last year; a mix of English and Russian poems. It’s my hobby, and only a few of my friends, who also write and perform poems, know about it. I met them through this school. Finally, I enjoy photography and want to develop my skills in this – I find visual art to be very important.

This year, Liza decided to stick to humanities subjects, opting to study Economics, Business, History and English Literature, with the hope of applying to university in either the Netherlands or the United Kingdom.  

I’m more of an artistic or linguistic person, but I know that Business is a useful subject. I wanted to study History, as I’ve always enjoyed it. I also decided to take English Literature, as I found some relevant resources and materials on the internet, which I found interesting. I’ve read a few dystopian novels – a Brave New World, The Handmaid’s Tale, 1984.

I am planning to try and apply somewhere after I complete my AS exams – I know some Art faculties can accept you based on your AS grades if you have a good portfolio and relevant experience. In my spare time, I try to work as a freelance photographer. I’m considering making that my future profession. I’m thinking about going to university in Amsterdam – The Fotofactory. I’m going there to participate in their summer school this year. I love the city and I like Holland as a country. I feel so comfortable and so myself there, I can dress how I like. Every morning, in the Moscow underground, with my blue hair, I feel people staring at me, but there I feel very free and there are many people like me.

The second place I’m considering is obviously Britain. This year, I won a grant for a contemporary dance course at the University of Lincoln, but unfortunately I couldn’t get a visa. They offered a week intensive course for candidates from Year 11 and 12. It’s exciting either way, because they replied to me and were very friendly. I think I would consider applying to their university in the future. Maybe I’d look at some beautiful cities like Oxford. The architecture there is stunning, and there are lots of amazing scientists working there, which I find very exciting. The Netherlands, however, offer a more informal style of education and I think I’d feel more confident there.


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