What was your motivation for undertaking postgraduate study?
Read more about my experiences
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My passion is to change my community and help bring peace, prosperity and development across all my country. Therefore, I decided to chase my dream to apply for another masters to study International Relations.
Since my return to Libya in 2017 I developed a huge interest to expand my knowledge on how the world functions politically and how countries speak to each other, through the different institutions and groups created in the recent decades. Moreover, the condition in Libya furthered this interest as Libya needs people who can deliver on promises and promote stability and bring the country towards a better level.
Although I graduated with a distinction in my Structural Engineering with Management Masters Class, I did not feel that this profession would suit my ambition, and I sought to expand my work with Civil Society Organisation and local groups that really help change people's lives in Libya. In 2019 I sought out an opportunity to raise my profile and help give me the needed understanding to reach my future goals.
Therefore, I progressed into applying for the Chevening Scholarship and thankfully by June 2020, after a rigorous process, I was selected from 63000 individuals worldwide to represent my country and come to the UK again to study my dream course, MA in International Relations. This was one of my best moments as I knew that the opportunity to study with UoB in this field would open up the doors to what I want to reach in Libya and the world. Hence, after several months preparation and a challenging pandemic, I managed to start my course in the UK in September 2020.
What, for you, are the best things about the course?
Coping with COVID lockdown is not an easy task. The best experience was being able to develop my skills to study online more productively and be selected for the Model NATO; that was a big online event. Also, the amount of courses that you can choose and allow you to have a wide range of understanding.
One of the greatest things that happened to me this year was that I became a father during the lockdown, so that was a great addition to my responsibilities. However, in terms of the course's addition to my life apart from the previous mentioned advantages was the ability to represent my country and act as an ambassador to it, making sure I conduct my affairs with my colleagues and teachers professionally and promote the multilateral relationship with the future leaders I see in a number of my colleagues. Also, supporting their ideas and helping them accomplish their essays by bouncing ideas off each other and discussing questions in different contexts.
Additionally, the modules I have chosen provided me with the necessary knowledge to take another step towards my dream. I was able to develop strong relationships with my lecturers and bring rich discussions to several seminars and events. Moreover, I was appointed as a student representative and was involved in several meetings and discussions that allowed me to further my impact, both at a student level and a managerial level in the university, as I was communicating the voices of the students and working closely with my lead manager to ensure a smooth delivery to all of my colleagues.
Finally, one of the most challenging aspects was maintaining productivity during the lockdown and ensuring I engaged in my seminars, conducting all necessary research and work throughout the use of online platforms and distant learning processes provided by the university. This was a difficult task to accomplish for e and my colleagues, but with determination and push, I was able to achieve my targets and finalise all my module assignments and various responsibilities assigned to me.
What piece of advice would you give to anyone considering postgraduate study in your field?
If you enjoy understanding how government function domestically and internationally then I would recommend studying International Relation. IR provides the student with the understanding of how the international system was set up 400 years ago and the theories behind how politicians and scholars explain specific events that occur throughout the world. Moreover, if you are interested in joining an international organisation or representing your country diplomatically then IR is the course for you.
If you are looking to understand how the world works through the interaction of countries and international organisations, then this course is for you. The course has a range of modules that allows you to focus yourself towards your interest and future career plans. For example, I have taken the security studies module and the global co-operation in practice module, because I have seen an opportunity to use both modules in the Libyan context and bring this knowledge to the work I do with International Organisations and local NGOs.
Additionally, even though we had a challenging year due to the restriction, the course significantly contributed towards my understanding of how real events impact the world of international politics and I am more aware of treaties, issues, cooperation, and accords that helped make the world as it is today. Furthermore, your observation to news and how political figures conduct their international business becomes more transparent and your analysis is furthered with an eye of reasoning to what is really going on, which is the core outcome of this course.
I strongly advise you, if you are looking to work internationally with your country or with International organisations within the field of cooperation and communication, then this course is for you. Moreover, you can add this knowledge to other areas of expertise and combine your knowledge to use as well. such as your ability to manage and awareness of the international relations.