JinHeng Lin

BSc Biomedical Science

Winner of the International Baccalaureate Undergraduate Merit Scholarship 2013

scholarship winner
Before coming to uni, I studied in an international school in China. We did the 2-year course of International Baccalaureate diploma, which consists of six subjects, three in Higher Level and three in Standard Level. I picked Biology, Chemistry and Mandarin at Higher Level, and Economics, English Literature and Mathematics at Standard Level.

I have been very interested in science when I was in school, especially biology and chemistry and how the two interact in human physiology. The University of Sheffield is UK’s leading research university that is constantly placed in the top ten of Times League Table for Biological Sciences. I am proud to be a student here in Sheffield and I look forward to work with the state-of-the-art research facilities and technology.

I was very excited when I got the email confirming my place as a University of Sheffield scholarship winner. It was the ultimate factor that brought me here to Sheffield - I had an offer from McGill University in Canada but they wouldn’t provide me with financial aid. The Sheffield scholarship really helps to lighten the burden of my parents, as I still have two younger siblings who will attend University in a couple of years. I feel honoured to receive such award and I will most certainly try my best to prove that I deserve this honour.

The practical classes in Biomedical Science are the most enjoyable part of studying at the University of Sheffield. We get to work with equipment that is more advanced than the ones we use back in school, such as micropipettes, spectrophotometer, and pH meter. Although writing up lab reports can get a little tedious, the experiments themselves are really interesting, and definitely more fun than labs back in school.

In my course, we usually have around 10 hours of lectures and 3 hours of practical class per week, with tutorials and research tutorials around twice a month. I think the structure of the course works well for me, as it offers a great deal of flexibility (certainly better than the typical 8-hour school day everyday in a week). There are a lot of independent reading outside of lectures, mainly to solidify the understanding of the content; I think it would take some time to get used to this sort of studying method when one comes straight from school, but it is beneficial to get accustomed to independent work as it is essential in future careers.

As a leading research university in Biological Sciences, an education in the University of Sheffield would grant me a substantial amount of knowledge and laboratory experience in the field, which would be aid me in my future career.

The student life here in Sheffield is very relaxing. Everything is paced slowly, as opposed to the life in a large city like London or Hong Kong. There are lots of activities planned by the student’s union and various societies, in addition to the variety of bars and clubs in town; the nightlife in Sheffield is pretty amazing.

After finishing my degree, I wish to pursue this course further by enrolling in Masters and PhD studies. After my PhD, I plan to engage in postdoc research in a university, immersing myself into the forefront of discoveries in biomedical science.

For those who come from tropical countries (like myself), I would recommend shopping for warm clothes to counter the cold weather here in the UK. In general, pack lightly because you could get all the daily essentials here easily, including beddings and cooking utensils. Also, before arriving in Sheffield, take a look at the societies and sports offered by the uni, and start planning ahead since you would be quite busy during freshers week. Meeting some course-mates and flatmates on the facebook pages would be nice as well to get to know some people before arrival.