Feresha Qayumi
Programme:
MSc International Health Management
Nationality:
Afghan
Undergraduate education:

BSc Radiography, University of London

MSc International Health Management

About you

What work experience/internships did you have before beginning with Imperial College Business School?

As soon as I graduated from by BSc Radiography, I started working as a Therapeutic Radiographer in the University College London Hospital’s Radiotherapy department from August 2016 to August 2018. During my role as a radiographer, I was very much involved in other projects, in which I conducted departmental audits and facilitated the Cancer Education Programmes. Prior to that, I volunteered as an Assistant Project Manager for the mental health charity MIND and worked alongside women of BMER communities to breakdown the mental health stigma that exists, by conducting workshops and organising social events. During my summer breaks, I visited Afghanistan and volunteered at different national hospitals in Kabul, including the Indira Gandhi Hospital and National Military Hospital, which have both managed to leave precious marks on my heart for both healthcare and Afghanistan.

Why did you decide to study an MSc International Health Management at Imperial College Business School?

The combination of my work and volunteer experiences initiated an ever-lasting fire within me to become an individual that could improve people’s health and tackle the global managerial challenges within healthcare systems. I committed myself to become an individual that could bring smiles to faces, help individuals live healthier lives and truly make a sustainable and long-term difference on an international level. This is when I started searching for programmes that would enable me to achieve my goal and came across MSc International Health Management at Imperial. Imperial College Business School is the ideal combination of providing expertise in niche Master’s programmes and having an extraordinary academic reputation which is seen as extremely valuable by employers across the globe. The career focus that Imperial provides right from the start enables the students to focus their vision for the future and what career options they have.

Did you receive a scholarship?

I received the £10,000 Business Scholarship and it really touched my heart when I found out. Having that contribution from the scholarship on board further consolidated my choice of Imperial. I felt like my previous experience, societal contribution and dedication paid off in its best terms. Since this programme is full-time, and I decided to stop working as a healthcare professional and take on a career change, this scholarship is even more significant in terms of financial support. I highly recommend all future students to consider this scholarship and take the opportunity to receive funds and apply for scholarships early.

Programme

What aspects of the programme do you enjoy the most?

I love the fact that this programme has become a platform in which many students from all around the world with various professional and ethnic backgrounds, beliefs, mentalities and perspectives come together under one roof and strive to improve global healthcare in different ways. I feel that I have learned the most from spending time with such a diverse group, sharing experiences and perspectives within the healthcare context – it truly is a rewarding and enjoyable experience!

Which has been your favourite module so far and why?

I’d choose Health Systems & Policy because it is a module that really managed to draw all content together practically. We learned about international healthcare systems, its structure and organisation and challenges, which we really felt like healthcare consultants faced. Since my heart lies in healthcare on an international level, this module really managed to touch exactly those chords.

What has been the most rewarding part of the programme?

The most rewarding part has been making new friends I know I’ll have for life. I thought I had enough friends until I met some of the most beautiful souls from all different parts of the world. This is an aspect of the programme I will always be grateful for.

What has been the most challenging part of the programme? 

Although a rewarding experience, I’d say managing and dealing with diverse groups during our group projects is one of the challenging parts of the programme. I believe it is an essential skill that I’ve learned from the programme, knowing that situations like these are very common in professional life. Being the Chair of the programme, I’ve had to deal with many challenges and disagreements from which I have learned a lot.

People

Did you have a favourite professor/lecturer and why?

Pedro Rosa Dias, our Health Systems & Policy professor and Jeremy Fernando, our Accounting professor. More than being good lecturers, they both truly cared for our cohort and wanted each one of us to genuinely learn from their modules and the whole Master’s experience. Even when both modules finished, both lecturers have supported me with other modules, careers advice and spent their own personal time to help us with academic challenges whenever we requested. They were both friends and academics during my time at Imperial which I truly cherish!

Opportunities

What has been the greatest opportunity you have had at Imperial?

Networking has been the greatest opportunity at the Business School. I believe Imperial is the ideal platform to network and meet professionals and leaders from all around the world in events, as guest lecturers and academics. I truly believe great opportunities have not only arisen for myself but for other students too. A simple conversation with one leader/professional has gone a long way for many students! I’d recommend all future students to truly make best use of such opportunities.

Which workshops, events or guest lectures at the school have been useful in developing your skills and knowledge?

Many workshops and events have been useful, but I’ll remember the panel event we had with MSc International Health Management alumni, in which we could all ask questions and learn from their experiences. It really was an eye-opener to where the true value of the programme lies.

What clubs, societies or other activities have you been involved in at Imperial?

I am currently the MSc International Health Management Programme Chair and have, therefore, been very much involved in SSC events, DSAC and university events in bringing all students together.

How have you benefited from being part of the wider Imperial College London community, and the wider STEM community?

Absolutely! Not only have I been able to connect to academics from different disciplines but also students from other programmes and connect with the wider Imperial College London community. It made me feel part of a wider community and we were able to develop our ideas, recommendations and perspectives on how we could work together to improve the Imperial experience for current and future students!

Career

What are your future career goals and how have they been realised since being at Imperial?

I am hoping to work to improve healthcare systems in developing countries. The entrepreneur in me has been awakened while studying at Imperial, I have realised that I have a business side to me that I am really looking forward to using to reach my end goal. This business side started initially during the Marketing and Strategy modules and was further consolidated during the Entrepreneurship module and Business Plan Competition.

London Location

Do you think studying in a central location such as London is beneficial for networking and career opportunities?

I have lived in London for 12 years now, so having the opportunity to study at Imperial felt like being at home. I have always loved living in such a vibrant city that has a tremendous networking and career benefit from which many of the international students in my cohort have benefited from.

When you’re not studying, what do you enjoy doing?

I am a gym fanatic! I am a girl that loves lifting weights and keeping fit, so if I am not studying, you can find me in the gym. In addition to building muscles, I do love writing poetry and spend much of my spare evenings enjoying that!

Tips

Looking back to when you were applying for the programme, did you attend any online webinars or on-campus information sessions?

I solely depended on the university website, reading about the programme and investigating what current students had to say about the university.  I also consulted a lecturer from my past degree, and he recommended Imperial too!

What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying for the programme?

Research and talk to as many people as possible! I’d say, first ensure you’re clear in what you intend to get out of the programme because this is a huge investment in terms of financials and time. If you are not sure, then I recommend for you to speak to current students on the programme who will be able to give you recommendations and advice tailored to you.

Programme:
MSc International Health Management
Nationality:
Afghan
Undergraduate education:

BSc Radiography, University of London