GSO Teaching Fellow: Muhammad Farooq
Meet Muhammad Farooq, a graduate student orientation (GSO) teaching fellow and doctoral student in the English program. Read on to learn more about his favorite places in Kent, what he enjoys doing in his free time and what advice he has for incoming graduate students.
Where is your hometown?
I am from Peshawar, Pakistan.
Why did you choose Kent State University?
I chose KSU for its beautiful location, affordable cost of living, and above all, for its research environment.
What do you like most about living in/near Kent? Do you have a favorite local spot or activity?
I like walking on the Portage Hike & Bike Trail to get in shape and visiting downtown to read and listen to the Traveling Stanzas covering the utility boxes all over the city.
What is your favorite KSU memory?
Organizing and chairing the 36th Annual Graduate Research Symposium, the largest research activity at Kent State, is my favorite KSU memory. It was fun to see grad students from across the university back in person after a couple years of COVID-19 stalemate, and to have them share their promising research work and ideas with fellow grad students and faculty members.
What are some differences you've noticed in being a graduate student (expectations, pressures, visibility, etc.) than those of an undergraduate student?
Well, graduate studies is a deep dive into one's area of research interest and an opportunity to finally do what one has been putting off through the entire undergrad. Grad studies require more autonomy and independent thinking as compared to undergrad and that, at times, could be overwhelming but a good network of support can help us get through. Thankfully, Kent State has lots of networking opportunities.
What advice do you have for incoming graduate students?
Discipline is the key to success and to keep work-life balance. Schedule every activity--even parties, dinners, or going to the Recreation Center--and plan ahead for every activity and life's goal. And if you're a first-generation student like me and feel like you're always late to the party then network, network, network!
Fun Fact About Me:
What's life without coffee and conversation?