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British Council Scholar pursues academic career

British Council Scholar pursues academic career

Published: 14 Mar 2023

Nashrah Mustafa

My Brunel experience has given me exposure to a breadth of possibilities in biomedical sciences and an excellent scope for professional and personal development

Nashrah, Postgraduate, Alumni

Lecturer - School of Pharmacy, BRAC University

Disease Mechanisms and Therapeutics MSc - 2022

From Bangladesh

Previous Institution

BRAC University - Bachelor of Pharmacy followed by Master's in Biotechnology

Tell us about your educational and/or career journey since you graduated from Brunel?

After I graduated from Brunel as a British Council Scholar, I joined BRAC University as a Lecturer - one of the leading universities in Bangladesh. I have always dreamt of becoming an academic - influencing young minds of the country to think beyond traditional lines while sharing my knowledge through stories, which I can successfully achieve. Studying at Brunel has been a stepping stone towards my professional, academic, and personal growth. It helped me grow as an academic and paved my path to becoming an aspiring researcher.

What does a typical day at work involve for you?

For me, a typical day involves taking classes and preparing lessons using the latest peer-reviewed journal articles in addition to other resources and finding interesting topic-related videos that could spur a discussion among students in class. I believe that interaction through discussion is not only a great way of learning but also opens up doors of perception in students. Other than these, I usually spend the rest of my day mostly on cancer-related research. Additionally, as a British Council Ambassador, I have been motivating more students like myself to apply for similar scholarships in the UK, as I feel many young talents get overshadowed due to a lack of funding opportunities.

What’s been the highlight of your career journey so far?

It hasn't been too long since my return. Two weeks into my return to Bangladesh I qualified for the job I had always dreamt of. I joined the School of Pharmacy as a Lecturer on World Pharmacist's Day - it was like a dream come true! My joining day was quite eventful and I would regard it as the highlight of my career journey so far.

How would you say your Brunel experience has helped you to get where you are today?

My Brunel experience has given me exposure to a breadth of possibilities in biomedical sciences and an excellent scope for professional and personal development. My experience was not only limited to my academic pursuits, I also learned how to live on my own, manage my finances, and adapt to a new social environment - all of which shaped me into a more confident person. Furthermore, I got the opportunity to network with globally acclaimed scientists from my field; connections I would like to nurture and leverage in the future. I believe that my programme at Brunel was beyond just a degree - it was a path-shaping experience that would help me make more of my qualifications and skills.

Why did you choose to study at Brunel and why would you recommend Brunel to others?

I felt that the programme structure of my course, Disease Mechanisms and Therapeutics, was immaculately designed, having a balance of theoretical and practical work. I would also like to highlight that the programme included Scientific Communication as a module, which I believe is essential in drawing public attention towards scientific discoveries as opposed to similar courses in other universities.

Brunel is home to around 2,500 international students from around the world, meaning that it provides an ideal setting for an international student to blend into the learning environment while broadening their horizons. Additionally, Brunel's campus offers a 'best of both worlds' scenario: it is located near Heathrow Airport and less than an hour's journey from Central London, while also providing a large unified campus as opposed to several campuses scattered throughout the city as is the case with most universities that are located in the London area. Whether someone wants to spend a day on campus enjoying the countless activities and facilities that can be enjoyed in a large campus setting or spend a day exploring the city of London, Brunel students can do both.

What is your best memory of studying here?

My favourite memory is still the first time I stepped into Brunel and got lost in the beauty of the campus. The place, the architecture, the welcoming environment - everything seemed so amazing and nearly perfect. I was really excited about my new home for the year.

If you could give one piece of advice to current Brunel students, what would that be?

My advice to current students would be to make the most of their time at Brunel - join societies and student associations, make new friends, network with people from their field of interest, and most importantly, enjoy the process of getting to know people. These professional relationships will help you in your career in ways that you could never imagine.

What would be your top tip or key advice for new graduates as they begin their career journey after leaving Brunel?

My advice for new graduates is to be true to yourself and focus on your goals. With your focus stern, you will not falter!