University of Worcester Helps Commonwealth Students to Achieve Ambitions


Shandana Rehman, from Pakistan, and Immaculate Moururi, from Kenya have spent the last year studying at the University under the Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme.

The scheme, which is a joint initiative between the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and UK universities, supports scholarships for students from developing Commonwealth countries who would not otherwise be able to study in the United Kingdom.

Shandana, who studied for an MSc in Public Health, trained as a Dentist but decided she wanted to re-focus on raising people's awareness on health. "I want to work for the United Nations, said the 25-year-old. "I know it's a big dream but working with the World Health Organisation or the UN could be where I make the difference I want to."

Immaculate also studied for an MSc in Public Health. "As a nutritionist, I used to have mothers come to me who had a sick baby," she said. "No matter how much I told them about a healthy diet and good hygiene practices, I know that baby would stay sick because it doesn't have access to clean water. That is when I knew I need to start at the roots. My Masters in Public Health can help me to do that."

Shandana recalled being very nervous when she arrived in the UK back in September 2015. "I was scared; it was a big change, a very big change, and since I don't have anybody here, no family or friends, it was very scary."

She added: "It's been one of the best experiences of my life. I'm glad I came. I never thought I could do this in my life. I would advise anyone who can, to come study here."

For 28-year-old Immaculate it was her first time travelling to another country let alone her first time on a plane. "I had mixed feelings," she said. "I was afraid, which is normal. It was a fear of the unknown. But I think the excitement was more than the fear."

She added: "I have met wonderful people and most importantly I have achieved my lifetime dream of studying abroad and getting first class education. I would like to make a positive impact on my community back home. Now I have my Masters, back home I will be taken seriously so I can make the difference I want to."

University of Worcester Vice Chancellor, Professor David Green, said he was very proud of their achievement.

"Highly skilled graduates working in such an important area as public health are truly essential for social and economic development and the well-being of the people." he said. "The University of Worcester is delighted that Shandana and Immaculate chose to study with us over this past year and have been so successful. We know that over the coming years they will each make an outstanding contribution to the development of Kenya and Pakistan respectively."

For information on courses at the University of Worcester come along to one of our Open Days, taking place on October 1st, October 28th, October 29th and November 27th.