Sama Almarzooqi

Country: United Arab Emirates
Degrees: Bachelor of Development Studies
Faculty: Arts, Business, Law and Economics
Scholarship: Home Country

Why did you choose the University of Adelaide?
“Two of my friends studied in Adelaide, one at the University of Adelaide and the other at UniSA.  They both had very positive experiences and told me that Adelaide was a relaxed, friendly student city.  I considered universities in the United States because I have family there, but I decided that Adelaide offered an interesting and different experience.  Ultimately, I was influenced by the course because it was exactly what I was looking for.”

Are you a scholarship student?
“Yes, I am sponsored by UAE Ministry of Higher Education/ UAE Cultural in Canberra. The Scholarship program exists because there is a push to get more Emirati nationals into various fields, such as working with NGOs. When I return home, I hope my qualification will help me get a job with an NGO, such as WHO ‘World Health Organization’, UNDP ‘UN Development Project’, ‘World Food Program’, ‘Dubai Cares’, or ‘Khalifah Fund’.”

Throw yourself into everything! Don’t forget about your studies but be as social as possible, and explore Adelaide.

Sama Almarzooqi

What do you like best about the uni?
“I love being surrounded by all of the beautiful old architecture.  It is great just walking around campus and seeing these old traditional buildings.  My favourite place is the lake in front of the International office. The library is also a great resource, it’s big and the staff are helpful in finding material.”

Where do you live?
“I live about a 7 to 10 minute walk from the university so I don’t really have an excuse for being late to lectures!”

What have you enjoyed most about your course so far?
“The minor I took last term in Gender Studies.  It was fascinating and helped me see society and situations in everyday life from a different perspective.”

What do you do in your spare time?
“I’m a Junior Youth Animator for the Junior Youth Empowerment Program, which is a moral education program that develops positive qualities and attitudes in 12 to 15 year olds.  The Program equips teenagers with an understanding of their own potential and empowers them to engage in community service. My role is to be a positive role model to them and help them form bonds of trust, friendship and love.”

“One of the best experiences I have had was attending an indigenous Junior Youth Group.  It gave me an insight into their lives and an opportunity to give something back to the community, whilst enabling me to gain some great experience working for an NGO in the future.”

What do you love about Adelaide?
The old buildings and learning about the history of the buildings. The friendliness of the people and the fact you can eat any kind of food here... especially Chinese, since there’s a China Town, also Thai, and Arabic.

How is studying here different to the UAE and at home?
“I’m more independent here and I get to live with friends, which is great fun and a whole new experience. I have had no problem making friends, there are a lot of International students and everybody is very open and excited to socialise with new people.”

Do you have any advice for new students arriving in Adelaide?
“Throw yourself into everything! Don’t forget about your studies but at the same time be as social as possible, make many friends, and explore the city.”