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Student Muhammad Usman standing and holding sign that says 'I AM stressed'

Muhammad Usman

Biomedical Engineering - BEng (Hons)

Faced with the devastating prospect of giving up on his dreams of going to university, Muhammad discovered he could apply for a course in Clearing. Now he’s on track to pursue his ideal career in the medical industry.

“With results day rapidly approaching, I was extremely stressed and worried that my dreams of getting into uni were over because my applications had been rejected. I originally applied for a paramedic course but I was rejected by all the universities I had applied to as it’s such a competitive course. I’m the oldest of five children in a South Asian family, and no-one in my family had been to uni before. I felt like very high expectations had been set but I had no guidance or anyone to turn to in my family who could advise me on what to do next.

I started to look into work options and was considering getting certified to be a gas engineer, as this is a career my father pursued and I would have been able to work with him. However, I still had a niggling feeling that I still really wanted to go to university. It was actually a friend that mentioned Clearing to me. He explained what it was and so I went and did some research to see what courses the local universities offered that I could apply for when I had my exam results.

My parents were really keen for me to attend university but also felt quite strongly about me staying local to Birmingham and commuting, so I started researching Clearing on BCU’s website and noticed there was a Clearing Open Day. I attended and the staff were really helpful in talking through the different courses they had on offer to see if any of them were of interest to me. When they talked to be about the biomedical engineering course it completely captured my attention. I realised this course would give me a fantastic opportunity to help others in their everyday life to overcome medical adversity.

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See what courses are currently available through Clearing.

Finding this course and realising I could apply through Clearing made me feel way less stressed and confident that I had a new plan. Many of my family are engineers so this felt like a really great fit for me and also meant that I could pursue a career in the medical field after all, which had been my intention when I applied to be a paramedic. It was a really easy and straight-forward process for me to apply while I was at the Open Day. The staff were extremely kind, and gave great guidance and advice which gave me hope.

So far university has been a very versatile experience and I’ve met so many great students from different areas and cultures. It’s been very memorable and I’ve enjoyed every step of the journey so far. I’m actually so glad I didn’t get onto my original course because I just feel like I’m so much more suited to biomedical engineering and have a clear idea of the career I want to embark on.

When I graduate I’m really keen to get experience in industry with different companies to gain more knowledge and skills, and then I’d like to progress on to start my own biomedical engineering company. I’d also really love to get to the point where I invent a medical device that would benefit the industry and the people it helps.”

Muhammad is the perfect example of how exploring your options and being open-minded about other courses can help you accomplish your dream. He has some great advice for looking at new courses.

“Research the course thoroughly before accepting and really dive into the modules and topics to make sure you’re aware what you’re getting into.”