Medal win for Asmaa as she begins her journey to become a doctor

April 6, 2023

A first year medical student who began her journey to becoming a medic at NESCol has been awarded a medal for achievement named in honour of a pioneering Scottish female doctor.

Asmaa Haamid is the University of Aberdeen recipient of the Dr Elsie Inglis-Scottish Women’s Hospitals’ Trust Medal and Prize.

Eliza Maud “Elsie” Inglis (16 August 1864 – 26 November 1917) was a Scottish doctor, surgeon, teacher, suffragist, and founder of the Scottish Women’s Hospitals. During World War One she set up hospitals to treat thousands of injured men in brutal conditions on the European front line.

The Prize named after her is presented to the students with the highest aggregate marks for 2022 in the Gateway2Medicine programme at Aberdeen and the Glasgow Access Programme (GAP). It was devised and funded by Ian McFarlane, founder and chair of the Dr Elsie Inglis-Scottish Women’s Hospitals’ Trust

The Trust’s Medal and Prize encourages more equal access to Medicine for Scots undergraduates and school leavers, also the aim of the Gateway2Medicine Programme.

A partnership between the University of Aberdeen and NESCol, with support from NHS Grampian, the programme is designed to support promising school pupils from rural and less advantaged backgrounds who want to study medicine

Gateway2Medicine was established because it was recognised that young people from less advantaged or more remote areas in Scotland may face barriers to a career in medicine. For example, some schools may not be able to offer all the subjects required in one year for standard entry to medicine or there may be challenges in accessing work experience opportunities.

Professor Rona Patey, Director of the Institute of Education in Healthcare Medical Science at the University of Aberdeen, said: “Our Gateway2Medicine programme is a fantastic opportunity for young people who had never thought of pursuing a career in medicine to do so with the help of the University of Aberdeen and North East Scotland College.

“We believe widening participation in medicine is key, both to address inequality for those from social and geographically disadvantaged situations and to create a diverse environment that benefits all our students and medical practice in Scotland.

“Asmaa’s achievements show how students can flourish with the right support and we are delighted to see her efforts recognised with the Dr Elsie Inglis-Scottish Women’s Hospitals’ Trust Medal and Prize.”

Asmaa, a former student of Aberdeen Grammar School, is now approaching the end of her first year of the medicine degree and is excited to have been given the additional support and confidence that completing the Gateway2Medicne programme has provided.

She added: “Being part of the Gateway2Medicine programme allowed me to work towards this award and I cannot thank the University enough for the support available throughout my time with Gateway. This award signifies my pathway to become a doctor and allows me to stay resilient and strive through when it gets hard.”