Why did you choose to study at UEL?
I was transitioning over to Natural and Medical Sciences from my first degree in Computer Science, which was engineering focused. Other universities had a year long waitlist and I didn’t wish to wait for a whole year and UEL accommodated my need at the time and allowed me to start within days.
What is your one special memory of your time at UEL?
There are many, difficult to pick one. The one that has a special place in my heart is when I was going through a difficult time and was deciding if I should quit due to the circumstances at the time. I remember Prof Seed inviting me for tea to discuss this before making a decision and that meeting gave me hope and made me realise quitting wasn't the best option.
What have you done since graduating from UEL?
When I started transitioning over from an engineering focused degree in computer science to natural and medical sciences, I was perusing the dream of becoming a doctor. After completing my degrees at UEL, I joined a PhD programme at UCL in the department of surgery and biotechnology to work on decellularisation technology that was ultimately aiming to grow human organs from a patient's own stem cell using a 3D created lattice from the diseased organ of the patient. I decided to put my PhD endeavours on hold after six months and joined UCLA to study medicine and achieve my ultimate goal of becoming a doctor. This amazing programme also opened the door for me to take the United States Medical Licensing Exam, allowing me to become certified to practice in all 50 states.
What is your current job role? And what does it involve?
Becoming a doctor is a challenging task. I never imagined how much more difficult of a job it could become in the middle of a pandemic. The challenges faced are something I wasn't ready for but thankfully my training helped me through this difficult time.
How did UEL help you get to where you are now?
It paved the way and made me realise what my strengths were and how I was not defined by my weaknesses. At UEL, I was given the room I needed to grow both as a person and as a student. As a result, I became seasoned at public speaking, which had a direct effect on my ability to communicate effectively with those I work with in a close setting.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Always trust yourself, don't let other people's opinion of what they perceive you as discourage you from becoming the best version of yourself. Seek help and don't ignore issues, mental health is equally if not more important than physical health. It's okay to make mistakes, you are only human.
What advice would you give to UEL current students preparing to graduate?
Never settle, nothing is impossible. I was told many times over and over to give up, to take the easier way out, I never did. Took me 11 years to transition over from an engineering focused speciality to natural and life sciences, and ultimately to medical sciences. Looking back, I'd not change anything, you owe it to yourself to at least make a fair attempt to reach your dreams.
Tell us something about yourself that most people don't know:
I have always been an avid gamer since before I joined university and it's something I still enjoy to this day, although not as much as I used to.
If you were to do it all again, would you still choose UEL?
Without a doubt! The one year I was able to save by being allowed to start within a few days of registering my interest played a crucial role in my success. UEL also recognises talent and appreciates hard work. The scholarship offered by UEL covered my MSc in Immunology & Infectious Diseases and allowed me to remain focused on my studies instead of worrying about funding.