Qasem Alnasser

Country: Saudi Arabia
Degree: Master of Nursing Science (Oncology Nursing)
Faculty: Health Sciences
Scholarship: Home Country

Why did you choose the University of Adelaide?
“Firstly because the university offers the course I was looking to study; a master of nursing science (oncology specialism). Secondly because it is a Group of 8 university and one of Australia’s leading research universities.”

“When deciding where to study my family was also on the forefront of my mind. Adelaide was attractive because it offers a multi-cultural, safe, family-friendly environment. In short, the university suited my academic needs, and the city suited my family’s needs.”

What do you like best about the University of Adelaide?
“I have found the staff to be very supportive and friendly and I am really impressed by how highly qualified and supportive my lecturers are.  The facilities are great; the labs are really well equipped.”

People respect your faith and I have never felt discriminated against.

Qasem Alnasser

What do you like best about your course?
“I love the course because it is divided into two stages. After the first stage, I will qualify as a certified oncology nurse, a requirement of my sponsor.  After the second stage, I will gain a masters degree which will enable me to carry out research in the future to support my practice.”

Has anyone lecturer really inspired you? Why?
“Yes, my course coordinator for the haematology/oncology course. She started her nursing profession working with oncology patients and went on to specialise in oncology at Masters level. Later in her career, she completed her PhD and theses in oncology nursing and oncology treatment. Currently she is the oncology/haematology course coordinator, as well as a nurse consultant for the Cancer Council.”

“She has inspired me to pursue my education and become specialised in the area of oncology. In the future, I could work as a lecturer, clinical instructor or nurse consultant within my profession.”

What is the best thing about the campus?
“The historical buildings are great. Its central location is a real bonus.”

What is the best thing about living in Adelaide?
“Its multi-cultural community and the fact it is a safe and peaceful environment for my family.”

How do your family like Adelaide?
“My kids love it and are learning to swim and skate.  They do miss their family, but they are learning lots of new skills and are having enriching new experiences every day.  My wife has made some good friends and is enjoying the independence of living in Adelaide.”

What do you do when you’re not studying?
“I play my favourite sport, football. There are fields open for public use, where you can just go and join in a training session or a match.”

How is studying in Australia different to studying in Saudi Arabia?
“In Saudi Arabia, even at Masters level, you can only study a generic nursing degree.  Here, I am gaining the opportunity to become specialised in oncology, my area of interest. The focus in Australian universities is on self-study and fostering strong research skills.”

Have you had a clinical placement yet?
“Yes. I did my first placement at Calvary hospital, a private hospital in Adelaide which is similar to private hospitals back home, so the experience was very relevant. One of the most interesting placements I have had was in a rural hospital.  I would really recommend this experience to anybody looking to study the course.”

Have you used services specifically for Muslim students on campus?
“Yes, the university really respects different faiths.  There is a prayer room on campus for all students and in the school of nursing, they have also set-up a prayer room, specifically for Muslim students.”

Is it easy to find halal food in Adelaide?
“There is a vibrant Muslim community in Adelaide so it’s not difficult to find halal food.  People respect your faith and I have never felt discriminated against. For this reason, I didn’t find it difficult to adapt to living here.”

Are there any mosques in Adelaide?
“Yes, there are at least 5 mosques that I know of in different areas of the city.”

What do you do with your family in Adelaide?
“When I am not studying, we go for a drive into the Adelaide Hills, walk through the Botanic Gardens or catch the tram to Glenelg so that my kids can play on beach.”

What is your plan when you graduate?
“To return to Saudi Arabia and carry out research into nursing practice and patient care, within the area of Oncology. I’m sure my Masters will help progress my career and enable me to give a lot back to the hospital that is sponsoring me.”