Integration into the British Society / By Kastriot Berberi

There are many good examples of the ordinary european citizens that have been successfully integrated into the western societies particularly into the British society, a socitey of a real democracy and many opportunities. An example is that of Mr. Gezim Kikija, an immigrant form Albania.

He was borned in Paper, Elbasan of Albania. He is around early thirties. As the other immigrants from the rest of Eastern Europe, he arrived as an immigrant in the UK on July 1999. He is a modest example of how an Albanian immigrant could integrate in the British society.

The last education achievement in his country of origin was the completion of the four years veterinary course and Italian; from1990 to 1994 at “Shkolla 29 Nëntori”, Shkodër, Albania. The results of completion of these studies were of the distinction equivalence.

After that, Greece was the first country that sucked him as an immigrant. Not for very long as he had other objectives; to seek the real western world. He reached the UK at last. Off course, he faced many difficulties, which is not the time to mention them. Work for him was a necessity, but his further education was a great deal of importance to him.

From 2004 – 2009 he studded at the King’s College London, Masters of Pharmacy; currently in the fourth year (2.1). One year, from 2002 – 2003he also studded at the Birkbeck College in London; university foundation course in Biology and Chemistry, which he concluded with Distinction. Merit was another result; that of the course of English for Academic Purposes. Initially, from 1999 to 2001 he studded at Lewisham College in London. There he obtained BTEC First Diploma in Information Technology with the grade of Merit and GCSE in English with the Grade C.

As mentioned, he currently is pursuing a Masters of Pharmacy degree course, which generally includes the pharmaceutical, pharmacological and clinical sciences. The final year, that is the current one, includes an independent research project, which he has just finished, on the subject of the standardization of herbal medicines.

The degree will end in May, and then he will start the one-year pre-registration course in a community pharmacy, which leads to his full qualification as a pharmacist, in July 2010. Upon qualification, his intentions are to stay and work in London as a pharmacist. However, he would love to apply his profession to his “much missed home country”.

Although he has spent most of his time in the UK studying, this was not the reason he came to the UK. In fact, he came to work here for a better life. Nevertheless, while he was studying English and IT technology, the possibility came that he was able to turn his ambition to reality, thanks to his two good English friends, who encouraged him, trusted him, and invested for his studies.

Although he likes the profession of pharmacy, he probably chose to pursue it as a necessity of living, rather than as his ultimate fulfilling career. Had he been given the opportunity, he would probably go for literature studies. Literature has always been his best friend.

Furthermore, although he does not actually read much for leisure time, he does love reading fiction on social and spiritual subjects. He also feels very much attracted by humanistic subjects in general, including history and national (Albanian) and international ethnography.

Creative writing has always been his best friend. Not only has he found relaxation in the passion of his, but it has also been his comfort for the many difficult years that he has had to go through in London. Short stories and poems are what he mostly writes, some of which include: “The boy and the white bread” ( short story), “Me, the whitch” (short novel), and the poems: “My river”, “The childhood”, “Is this really a sunrise” and “ The poet and the nature”. He has a novel in hand, however, which he is hoping to publish one day.

His poetry has been published at the London based magazine named ‘’Fjala e Lire’’. In the near future, his creative writing will be published in the Heamus magazine, as promoting work undertaken by the Heamus Cultural Association based in Bukuresht of Romania, in continuous corporation with ABC Project in London.

He likes to use his leisure time by creative writing, swimming, chess and football. However, he leaves time for working voluntarily at the Albanian-British Cultural Project located in London, official executive member of which has been since last year. He has and will continue to, voluntarily help other immigrants, especially ethnic Albanians from Balkan territories of Eastern Europe.

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