Alumni

Student story - Inaya Zaman

Inaya is a first-year History student at Queen Mary University of London. She accepted her place to study after completing her A levels in History, Maths and Physics. Inaya grew up in East London. She is the first in her family to go to university.

Inaya Zaman (BA History 2020- )
Sally Sainsbury History Scholarship recipient (2020-2022)

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"When I first started university I did struggle to adjust to the new environment. Surprisingly, my course is going really well. I really like the History department at Queen Mary and the fact that we have student mentors to give us guidance on our assignments. A fun fact about me is that I like to collect coins. The image on each coin I collect commemorates a historical event or figure. I find it fascinating how each one tells a different story.

"What stood out to me about Queen Mary is the diverse student body. You have the opportunity to meet and hear from students from different communities which is quite refreshing. I also like that my course is very broad for instance, I’ll be taking the Japanese film module next year which I’m excited about.

"I’ve been taking part in various projects at Queen Mary to boost my skillset. I’m a course representative for first-year History students and currently planning our first virtual event. My keen interest in Commercial Law motivated me to work with a student-led group inState- a social mobility initiative that aims to promote diversity in the corporate industry. Additionally, this semester I’m participating in The Student Constancy project – I work with other students on a real-life consultancy project within UK/ International businesses, charities and social enterprises.

"Studying from home can be tough for students. There have been times where I’ve had poor WiFi connection which made it hard to participate in online classes. Some students don’t have access to laptops or having to share laptops at home. It’s been difficult to find a part-time job to support myself financially because of the pandemic so I applied for financial assistance from Queen Mary.

"I was surprised when I found out I’ve been given an alumni-funded award. Because the award is based on financial aid and high academic attainment, I feel grateful to be recognised for my hard work. I’ve used the award to support my studies such as paying for my subscription to Grammarly – an online tool that improves grammar and style of writing. I hope to use the funding in the summer to secure an internship and take part in other extracurricular activities.

"I’m currently focusing on building my experience and skills while at university. I hope to secure a vacation scheme in my second year and eventually land a training contract – this will help fund the cost of my Graduate Diploma in Law after I graduate.

"I want to express my thanks to the late Sally Sainsbury for the generous donation. The Scholarship has helped lessen my financial burden. Her gift is life-changing for History students, like me."