Country of origin: Saudi Arabia
Strategy Department Assistant Director, Council of Health Services (Saudi Arabia)
Whilst studying at Lancaster University Taghreed reflected on her contributions to society and actively sought to make an impact during her time here. She presented her own research at the Young OR conference two years running as well as undertaking volunteer work within the community.
When I first stepped into Lancaster University Management School I felt full of anticipation. I felt like I was going to enjoy every moment of my time here. In my first year I spent a lot of time absorbing all the different cultures here, and comparing them to my own. My mindset turned 180 degrees! I have become more accepting of other people and now I have friends from many other nations. I love the way they have changed me subtly. I didn’t realise at first that I was changing, but now I see my friends as multi-coloured windows to other worlds.
In my second year I started to reflect on my first year, and I realised that I wanted to do more, to contribute more, to achieve more. I presented my research at the Young OR conference at Warwick University. This was the first time in my life that I had done anything like this, but the next summer I presented again, this time in the United States. My paper was published in the conference proceedings, and I now feel that I am on the way to achieving my academic goals.
As well as pursuing my academic and professional goals, my new life at Lancaster University made me think about contributing to society, and at the end of my second year I joined the University Volunteering Unit. I volunteered in Lancaster Public Library, taught local people how to set up accounts and use the Internet, and I also volunteered at the local British Heart Foundation shop.
The spiritual rewards and satisfaction I received from volunteering have inspired me to help unfortunate people, wherever they may be in the world. I will use my education and experience to help people who cannot get proper education for whatever reason. I know what they may be going through because I’ve been there myself.
Now I am completing my PhD and I am lecturing in the University, so I’d like to say a profound THANK YOU to the UK: for rebuilding my confidence and helping me to be the person that I am now.