Brother’s birth inspires future doctor

Zaynab Khan is the 2022-23 recipient of UCLan’s Livesey Scholarship

A Blackburn student who was inspired to become a doctor after seeing her brother being born has received a life-changing five-year scholarship from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

First year Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) student Zaynab Khan has been awarded the prestigious Livesey Scholarship, which covers all her tuition fees for the duration of the five-year course.

The 18-year-old said: “I was overjoyed and thrilled to be awarded the scholarship. I was excited about the prospect of going to university and studying medicine but it was a huge relief too because it really was the difference between being able to follow my dream of studying to become a doctor and not.

“The financial implication of studying medicine is significant in terms of the level of debt at the end of a course like this. This was something that has always worried me and I thank God for the scholarship which has taken away a lot of those worries and concerns, so that I can really focus on my studies. I am really grateful to UCLan for awarding me a place on the course and for the scholarship which was the icing on the cake.”

She was nine-years-old when she went to hospital to see her mum give birth to her brother and it was this moment which planted the seed and made a big impression on a young Zaynab.

The former Tauheedul Islam Girls High School and Sixth Form pupil said: “I’ve always been interested in medicine and the health of young children and babies in particular ever since my brother was born.

“I’ve seen him grow since day one and I saw how there was a whole team of people – doctors, nurses, midwifes – checking on the baby and mother. I’ve always been interested in how a whole team of people are involved in the care of the baby and mother throughout a whole period and that’s how I got into medicine.”

Zaynab, who is the first in her immediate and wider family to go to university for a career in medicine and healthcare, said: “I went through my A-levels not being able to attend college for a few months before my exams. I would advise everyone that no matter how bleak and unlikely things can sometimes feel to never stop aspiring above and beyond. You never know what the future holds – what matters is the drive and ambition to go further and the determination and focus to succeed.”

The Livesey Scholarship is offered to one MBBS student, who comes from a background that is under-represented at UCLan, and who has successfully completed the Pathways to Medicine Programme. The programme provides advice, skills, and support to strengthen student applications to medicine and other related professional healthcare courses.

Zaynab started the programme while a Year 12 student and completed tester sessions, a summer project on ultra-focussed foods and their link the causes and solutions of obesity and finished with a presentation to UCLan academics and fellow students.



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