There are endless possibilities if you keep being curious

We at Cybernews Academy sat down with Ayman Ali to discuss the steps he took and how he managed to find his dream university. Originally from India, Ayman started school in Saudi Arabia. In his final year of studies, this intrepid traveler was preparing to choose his university but had to make a difficult decision–where would he travel next? America, the UK, or would he return to his home country of India? As a huge cricket fan and his school's team captain, he knew he wanted to enroll in a university with an elite sports facility. That’s when he began shortlisting universities based on his love of cricket. Finally, after much deliberation, Ayman discovered one of the top sports universities in the world– Loughborough University.

Finished School - Where To Next?

Throughout Ayman's interview with Cybernews Academy, he recalls how he landed in the UK, his steps in finding his dream university, and his aspirations for the future. As said before, sport drove his decision-making, as he “chose (his) shortlisting based on cricket.” He goes on to say that his “university is the number one in sports all over the world,” and that’s how he landed in Loughborough. Alongside his love of the game, many other factors helped steer his decision to study in the UK. Firstly, the UK proved closer to home, and he could travel back home occasionally. Secondly, the job opportunities, startups, and companies generated within the UK piqued Ayman’s interest. Although there are similar opportunities in the US, the competitive field didn’t speak to this sports enthusiast. Ayman found that internships in notable companies would be more accessible within the UK. “The UK has its benefits that I lean towards,” he proclaimed.

One Step At A Time

But before we discussed business, Ayman spoke affectionately of his experience at Loughborough University and how he grew to appreciate his Computer Science course. The future professional told us specifics about the structure of his course and the amount of theory and practice that goes into his degree. “Practical elements are a huge part of the computer science course. The course is 50% theoretical for the first two years because you're still in the beginner stage of computer science and getting the basics.” The computer whiz went into more detail surrounding the structure of his university experience. Ayman praised Loughborough for its flexibility as the university provides freedom for their final year students. He said, The more and more you become a senior and go into your final year, the more freedom you have to select if you want to go down the research or theoretical route versus the more practical.” The budding student commends his university by saying that the liberal attitude is just “one of the things our university does very well.” In Ayman’s eyes, Loughborough University gives “students autonomy to decide what part they want to take.”

Alongside Ayman’s hard work, Loughborough University offered support and structure, which helped him succeed in his studies. In particular, he commented on the balance between theory and practice. I watched intently as he recounted the time before his placement, where “the balance was perfect, to have your prep in your theoretical understanding but also get your hands dirty and see what it would be like in a professional setting.” Having a good understanding of his university, goals, and course structure helped jump-start his professional success.

Discovery Of A New Passion

On top of specializing in Computer Science, Ayman cultivated a new passion; business. This future CEO speaks on his aspirations by addressing the topic of linear career progression and his thoughts surrounding business and computing. Ayman touched on an interesting point surrounding career development. He believes a hands-on, multidisciplinary approach is key to a successful business. This aspiring businessman playfully remarked, “I personally don't believe in having linear career paths. Because the end goal that I want to achieve in my career is to lead a company, and I believe that the best part isn't to go through linearly. I wanted to explore multiple functions of the business.” Loughborough University helped facilitate Ayman’s work experience. However, he told us that “you have to hunt for the placements and internships yourself.” Loughborough University has, in his words, “amazing resources” and a brilliant “careers network.” Ayman highlighted how universities can help you find internships and gain work experience. Throughout the interview, he went into more depth about the methods used at Loughborough University. Ayman spoke highly of Loughborough and stated that the university “can help you find placements, do mock interviews, resume preps, and hold company fairs that help you understand what the process is like.”

Hard Work And Dedication Finally Paid Off

Unsurprisingly, Ayman’s intuition and research paid off as he began working for Amazon. “I worked for six months as a technical program manager, then I did three months as a product manager, and now I'm planning to do another three months starting next week at AWS as a customer solutions manager.” He said it “would be a hundred times harder if I tried applying in the US, purely because of the competition and the amount of talent that's out there.” Ayman compared both the UK and the US and gave his opinion surrounding the ease of access. He chose the UK over the US due to the competitive nature of the professional environment. Ayman could only come to this conclusion through extensive research. With his smart sleuthing and a strong intuition behind him, Ayman secured a place in a top university and landed a solid job in his desired profession. All while using the skills he gained at Loughborough University.

Ayman left our Cybernews Academy interview with some insightful words from this Jack of all trades. When asked to summarise his course briefly, he said, ‘there are endless possibilities if you keep being curious.’ This perfectly encapsulates the university experience and the opportunities that continuous learning affords. The possibilities are truly endless.