"My name is Maria and I grew up in Rome, Italy. I completed my undergraduate degree in Biomedical Sciences at Queen Mary University and now studying Medicine at Barts and The London. I’m a recipient of the Scholarship for Excellence funded by our alumni. I want to share how the generous award supported by student journey."
Maria volunteering in Peru by carrying out non-medical and medical work.
"I spent three years completing my biomedical science degree at Queen Mary University. I thoroughly enjoyed my time here doing my undergraduate that it was no question that I wanted to stay to do medicine. Also, my dad is a Doctor and my brother studied medicine so, it is a big deal for me to follow in my family's footsteps.
"I really like the content we’re learning on the medical course. My favourite part has to be doing practical tasks and getting hands-on with our learning. Unfortunately due to Covid-19 students aren't able to do any practical learning so I’m missing doing placements.
"I was so pleased when I found out I’ve been awarded an alumni-funded Scholarship. It felt good to be recognised for my hard work and have the reassurance that I’m on the right track. The award has enabled me to take part in a volunteering trip to Peru for 3 weeks some time back. I had a chance to carry out medical and non-medical work. For example, we built houses for people in Lima who had no homes and we set out on a medical mission to offer free dental treatment to schools. It was such a memorable experience and a fantastic opportunity to develop my professional experience and knowledge.
"Finances do weigh heavily on students. Some students are dependent on the extra financial assistance to support their studies because student fees and studying in London is expensive. Finances can be particularly straining on disadvantaged students who are doing a long degree such as medicine. Many medical students often work part-time alongside a demanding degree to get by financially.
"Thank you! I’m so grateful for this award and your support. I feel inspired by our generous alumni for helping students. I too would like to give back to the Queen Mary community in the future, if I’m able to.”