I made it, finally!

Atiq Rahman

Faculty: Medical Science
Course: MCh Minimally Invasive and Robotic Surgery
Category: Health

28 November 2017

I'm an international postgraduate student doing my Masters in Minimally Invasive and Robotic Surgery at ARU. Since early childhood, I have been always been fascinated by machines.

I was famous (!) for breaking each and every toy of mine down to the last piece and then trying to reassemble them again, which was literally impossible. It took me a bit longer to understand my passion fully. Our body is the biggest machine that has ever been built. The adrenaline rush I experienced being in OR [the operating room] during my internship was, in a single word, surreal!

But being a graduate from a developing country has its own drawbacks. Sometimes, one has to compromise their passion to focus on something bigger in life. After graduating from Dhaka Medical College, which happens to be the top medical college in Bangladesh, I had to take a study gap for numerous issues. The most daunting one was without a doubt finance. Having said so, I always believed that where there is a will, there is a way. I came up against that situation, got married and started my journey towards my dream.

When it comes to the surgical field and being a non-registered international medical graduate with the GMC (General Medical Council), opportunities are narrowed down to a very frustrating level. After securing a decent score in IELTS, I started looking for what could be my next destination. Trust me when I am saying this, I have been to more than 100 UK university websites looking for postgraduate courses in either clinical anatomy or surgery. Out of those universities, I only found seven relevant courses. I applied to all seven and secured a place at four.

After that came the tricky part. I had to choose the best one out of four, which was going to have a major impact not only on me but also my whole family. But I am proud to say, so far, it seems I made the right choice. ARU is one of the handful of universities offering courses with practical experience of da Vinci® Surgical System (Intuitive Surgical Inc., CA, USA) in the UK. We are being taught by a surgeon who is considered to be one of the pioneers, in Europe, for establishing a robotic platform for upper gastrointestinal surgery. Expertise with the touch of technology: who can ask for a better option than this?

Having said so, the journey will not be a bed of roses either. There will be hurdles but what my experience is indicating so far, is that with collaboration, we can overcome anything that comes our way. I hope to share the rest of the journey with everyone.

Till then have a nice time.

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