Student profile

Anna Fedenko

BSc Biomedical Science

Winner of the IB (International Baccalaureate) Scholarship 2014

I graduated from the Ukrainian high school after 11 years of studying, after which I completed the International Baccalaureate program in Ryde School with Upper Chine.

The University of Sheffield was one of the UK best highly ranked institutions for Biological Sciences. As well as this, the course is very much based on practical experience, which I personally prefer. Biomedical students are doing dissection of the human body in their second year, which promised a lot of additional useful experience.

As an international student, I did not know a great detail about all the universities in the UK. I was sure they are all pretty good. Although applying to Sheffield really felt right!

It felt great! This was one of those first essential things I have accomplished in my life so far and the first time I could do something that would be of real help to my family, especially considering the current political situation in Ukraine. The fact that I got the scholarship also proved (myself in the first place), that even the most impossible aspirations can be realised, with a proper amount of effort, not at once but in a right time.

The practical classes in the lab are pretty exciting! Although the Mini Project at the beginning of the 2-nd semester (the exam period for everyone else) was great indeed! It was an awful load of fun since the groups were working independently and the reasonable level of creativity was encouraged, yet we had a good chance to develop our research skills, work in the teams, as well as present material to large audiences.

The university methods of teaching are very different to those in schools, and I still need more time to get used to the new system entirely. Although all the lecturers and tutors are extremely helpful in case something is unclear, despite the fact that there are a lot of us on the,course. The practical classes and their review sessions do help a lot in terms of understanding the material we are covering, and also the reason for it. The occasional formative assessments help to evaluate own level.

The amount and the variety of clubs and societies available to join! This gave me a chance to start doing something I never imagined I would do (swing dancing, tutoring Maths in the secondary school), as well as to do stuff I really, really enjoy – playing tennis in the university team. SU clubs give students an opportunity to make some really good friends, get involved in a variety of socials, refresh after hours and hours of studying, improve some non-academic skills.

At the beginning I seriously thought of becoming a teacher in high or secondary school and making sure that Biology in everyone`s most favourite subject just like it was mine. Right now I am changing my perspectives a little bit and thinking of going into the neurological research, maybe trying to make some impact on our understanding of MS or Alzheimer’s syndrome, which are still incurable. But I am happy I can still keep my options open.

There is always enough time to be up-to date with studying, social life and extracurricular activities, so no excuses!