Posted on Wednesday, 05 April 2017 at 1pm
by Lifelong Learning Centre Staff.
My name is Muhammad Saleem (above far left) and I am 46 years old. I am married, have three children and I am self-employed. I came from Pakistan, English is not my first language and without formal qualifications in UK it seemed impossible to fulfil my dream of studying at university.
However, the part-time Certificate of Higher Education (Cert HE) in Arabic, Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies offered by the Lifelong Learning Centre was ideal for me in that I only had to attend the University for one day each week. The flexibility of the course suited me very well; there was minimal disruption to my working or family life due to my being at university.
During the two years of the Cert HE we were helped to develop our time management skills so that, when we progressed to full-time study, we had no problem adjusting to the increased attendance requirement. I was also well-supported in developing my English Language and critical thinking skills to enable me to write academically.
People go to university for a range of reasons; the experience of studying is different for everyone but always opens up perspectives and opportunities. University makes us grow, and we learn more about ourselves every day.
My hobby is reading, so the University is like heaven for me with 2.78 million books, 26,000 print and electronic journals, 850 databases and 6,000 electronic books in five separate locations across the campus, amounting to one of the largest research libraries in the UK.
Four years ago I wasn’t even feeling confident taking my English GCSE; now I have graduated with a 2:1 and am taking an MA in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies with plans to study for a PhD in the future, Insha’Allah.