LLB Law with Business Studies student Hamzah Hannan tells us how the Pathways to Birmingham scheme and Benussi Bursary will help his future aspirations whilst exploring the multicultural diversity of our University.
University is just starting. How have you found Welcome Week, what have you gotten involved with?
Welcome Week was both exciting and daunting. On one hand, I looked forward to starting my higher education and was confident as I knew Birmingham better than most students who were coming from other parts of both the UK and the rest of the world. However, the size of the university took me by surprise as I had not previously fixated on it before. After a lot of my welcome events, I took some extra time to explore the campus, locating the guild and certain facilities such as the prayer room. Being a Muslim, my prayers are a vital part of my day, and finding the university catering to this helped make me feel settled in a brand-new environment. This, alongside meeting representatives from different societies helped me get a feel for the culture at the University of Birmingham.
How are you feeling for your first week of teaching? Is there a particular module you’re looking forward to?
For my first week of teaching, I was looking forward to it as it meant that I was formally beginning my studies. I particularly looked forward to starting my criminal law module as I find it quite interesting due to the intricacies of our legal system. Also, I understand it is a very challenging subject that is mentally taxing, which both slightly worried me, but also motivated me to get stuck in and get a firm grasp on such a complex subject and its accompanying concepts.
What do you plan to use the bursary for?
The bursary will be immensely helpful as it means that I have fewer financial fears. It will allow me to join more societies that I had encountered in welcome week and also help me travel to university. As a commuting student, I spend a good portion of my off-campus time taking public transport, so the bursary will be useful in this sense. Also, as a law student, reading is crucial to success. The bursary will therefore be useful to investing in outside reading materials recommended by my lecturers and tutors.
Will the bursary help your future long plans?
My long-term plans may also move smoothly with the help of the bursary. As I like to make sure I budget correctly, it may come into use with driving lessons and potentially even purchasing a car, which would be fantastic for my long-term plans as the issue of transport is sorted. Also, there is a chance that the bursary may come into play when I decide on my career pathway. For instance, I may pursue an LPC or a BPC to begin my career. I may even take a postgraduate course such as an LLM in the future. Ultimately, the bursary paves the way for different options for my future by alleviating certain financial pressures both short, and potentially long term when combined with other scholarships.
Finally, what would you advise 16-18 year old students who are considering applying to the Pathways 2 Birmingham (P2B) scheme?
Do not doubt yourself. If you are thinking about applying to a P2B scheme, you should consider your options with the knowledge that Birmingham caters to those who may be disadvantaged in a myriad of ways like no other university. There is a real feeling that you are wanted here through the different scholarships, bursaries and awards to help you with your studies. The variety of societies highlight the multicultural nature of the University and means you will never be “the odd one out”, as all people have different cultures and hobbies and are of different ages as well as cultural and ethnic backgrounds. The P2B schemes have countless advantages that can help you reach your full potential, so consider these when making your final choice.