Prathamm originally from Mumbai joined the University of Central Lancashire in 2021. He has used his initiative to take part in various activities outside the classroom. Read about his story below.
"The programme is demanding but I like this as it allows me to push myself and develop transferable skills. I’ve developed a good understanding of physiology and cause of disease at molecular level. Lectures are creative and not your typical notetaking affairs. There have been lots of workshops and practical sessions where we use the latest equipment, and this allows us to apply the knowledge we have gained. This differs to the teaching style I am used to in India which is more theory-based.
"I have a part-time job as a Healthcare Assistant with Lancashire County Council. Over the last year, I have learned how to work in a multi-disciplinary team and deliver patient centred care. I am trained to support patients and give them medication too. The academics on the Biomedical Science programme are experts in the field and are very approachable. They are always there to support and push us to reach our maximum potential.
"I decided to study at UCLan because the Biomedical Science programme is accredited by the Institute of Biomedical Science which is necessary for HCPC registration. I chose UCLan because Preston is a student city with a strong international community.
"One of my favourite things about studying here is the compact nature of campus and the city"— Prathamm Santosh Surana, BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science
"Moving to a new country to live and study was a challenge at first, but the supportive nature of the university really helped me to settle in. I was very open-minded during my first few months here and I’m glad I took this approach as it helped me meet new friends in the same boat as myself. We all supported each other, and I really benefited from the friendly atmosphere on campus. My advice to all new international students would be to make connections with students and staff whenever you can, it will really enhance your experience!
"Everyone at UCLan is there to help you. For example, staff in the careers team can help develop your CV, the wellbeing team can improve your motivation and mental clarity and student ambassadors are always on hand to answer any questions you have – no matter how minor. I am also a member of the gym which is free for students and has a fantastic array of equipment. Personal trainers are also there if you need extra support.
"I arrived in Preston from Mumbai, India so the weather was a little bit of a shock – it’s much cooler here in the UK but you soon get used to it. One of the first impressions of the city was the quality of nightlife, there are lots of places to go and have fun and mingle with your fellow students. I also like the gardens and parks based in the city, they’re a great place to unwind, especially in the summer.
"There are lots of restaurants and a worldwide selection of cuisines including Indian, Mexican, Chinese and Arabic. One of my favourite things about studying here is the compact nature of campus and the city. Everywhere can be reached on foot and all the student accommodation is in the heart of campus. Preston is a well-connected city by public transport with lots of trains and buses which can take you to other major cities and towns.
"In my spare time, I am involved in the following ventures:
- PASS leader: I am trained and qualified to deliver facilitated learning sessions to first-year Biomedical Science students and help them reach their academic potential.
- Biosciences buddy: In this role, I support students academically and signpost them to relevant teams at the university should they need extra support. I have also volunteered at community health initiatives.
- President of Reprodev Science club: I manage all of the member activities, take the lead on projects and work with professors at the university. We recently ran a stall at the Lancashire Science Festival and take part in other public engagement activities.
- Member of Parasitology club: In this club, we discuss parasites and research common symptoms. Our work has been mentioned in the This Week in Parasitism podcast.
- Course rep for Biomedical Science programme: In this role, I listen to feedback provided by fellow students on the course and share this with relevant parties to try and initiate positive change."