Carnegie PhD Scholar awarded Robertson Medal 2023-24
Basem, you are one of the first recipients of the Asylum Seeker Scholarships offered by the Carnegie Trust and the University of Strathclyde. Could you tell us a bit more about yourself and what brought you to Glasgow?
I am from Ahwaz in Iran. I was a human rights activist, campaigning for Arab cultural and human rights. I was imprisoned and tortured for my activities by the Iranian regime. Fearing execution after my release (as happened to my close friend), I embarked on a perilous journey by foot and by boat to the UK: risking my life in fleeing from repression. I am now an asylum seeker in Britain. After much hard work, I successfully won a scholarship from the Carnegie Trust to study Aeromechanical Engineering at the University of Strathyclyde. I will be forever grateful for your generosity and kindness.
How did you become interested in Engineering?
Engineering and design has been my passion from a young age. Back in Iran, I previously graduated as a polymer engineer (University of Omidieh). I learnt how to design, analyse, and modify polymer materials. My course included an overview of engineering analysis and design techniques for synthetic polymers, treatment of materials properties selection, mechanical characterisation, and processing in design of load-bearing and environment-compatible structures. I first worked as an analyst for Semnan which is an Energy Chemical Company. More recently, I have developed an interest in aviation engineering, specifically the mechanics of transport safety.
What are your hopes for the future?
My ambition is to become a leading figure in the aviation industry, designing aircraft and working in Aerospace Engineering. I would like to work for a British engineering firm such as Rolls Royce and I am currently applying for internships in this field. By doing this, I further wish to serve as a source of inspiration and be a leader for my fellow Ahwazi citizens, achieving what they all assumed was impossible.
Awarded: Undergraduate Tuition Fee Grant
University: University of Strathclyde