UCLan student ‘living the dream’ following medicine scholarship

15 November 2018

An aspiring doctor said that he is ‘living the dream’ after being accepted for a prestigious scholarship

Aswin Gopalakrishnan was accepted on the five-year Bachelor Medicine Bachelor Surgery (MBBS) course and is studying to be a doctor.

Aswin, who lives in Preston, said receiving news that he had been awarded this once in a lifetime scholarship was one of the best moments of his life.

He said: “I was over the moon that I was going to be studying medicine, but the scholarship was just the cherry on top of the cake.”

The 20-year-old would like to work in cardiovascular medicine following a family history of heart failure.

He continued: “I have always wanted to go into cardiology. Cardiovascular diseases are the number one cause of death globally. My passion for the heart really began when I witnessed my great grandfather pass away because of heart failure. It always puzzled me the way the heart stopped working suddenly which provoked me to look deeper to find out why.”

The Mackenzie Scholarship is offered jointly by UCLan and East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust and covers the tuition fees of the student in receipt.

It’s part of a wider, long-term UCLan strategy to attract and retain local doctors to NHS employment in the region, in response to the issues faced in both Lancashire and Cumbria relating to attracting and retaining health professionals.

"It’s brilliant to see such enthusiasm from Aswin, I wish him well on his journey and look forward to following his progress."

Aswin said: “I want to be a doctor as it will allow me to make a visible difference in people’s lives. I know that there are many other careers that work towards this objective, but the medical field is constantly changing due to technological improvements and new discoveries and I want to be part of that change.

“I feel that a medical career focuses a lot more on diagnosis of diseases and the treatment aspect of the medical world. It bridges the gap between in-depth scientific knowledge and patient contact.

“It’s something that stands out for me. I feel that I will be able to take on this huge responsibility and strive to help the world to be a better place.

“I decided to take on the medical sciences foundation programme at UCLan and studied in Burnley. After sleepless nights and hard work, I managed to get an offer to study MBBS and now I can happily say that I am living my dream.”

Dr Cathy Jackson, Executive Dean and Head of UCLan’s School of Medicine, said: “The Mackenzie Scholarship is a fantastic opportunity for a student to kick-start their career in medicine, and a key part of our continued efforts in helping to improve healthcare provision in Lancashire. Facilitating the training of doctors who will then go on to stay and work in the local community is a significant aspect of the wider strategy.

“It’s brilliant to see such enthusiasm from Aswin, I wish him well on his journey and look forward to following his progress.”

For more information on UCLan’s MBBS course and scholarship opportunities, visit the UCLan website.

Aswin Gopalakrishnan
Aswin Gopalakrishnan