MBA graduate, Asma Qazi, talks about the new life she has built for herself in Scotland since coming to Edinburgh Napier University to study.

Tell us a bit about yourself

My name is Asma Qazi, I come from Pakistan, and I recently graduated from my Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Edinburgh Napier University. I have now gone on to study my PhD here at Edinburgh Napier also.MBA graduate, Asma Qazi

What were you doing before your Masters?

Before my Masters, I was back in my home country working as a teacher. I was a teacher for about 13 years teaching English Literature. I decided I wanted to have my own business, so I started looking for some courses. I found Edinburgh Napier University and discovered it had its own business school, so I went ahead and applied. Fortunately, I got accepted and I came to Scotland to study.

Why did you choose to study at Edinburgh Napier?

I came to Edinburgh Napier because I wanted to do something that could go global and coming here gave me that international exposure that I needed.

Also, when I was researching Edinburgh Napier’s business school and its courses, I found the Leadership Practice module within the Masters in Business Administration. The Leadership Practice module was something I was looking for and which really appealed to me because I had a lot of teaching experience and was already working as a department head. I wanted to polish my own qualities so that was something I wanted to study further.

This course was only found at Edinburgh Napier University, so I applied for it and travelled here to study.

What is it about a Masters that appeals to you?

I wanted to do a Masters because it was a two-year programme with lots of different modules, on top of that it covered a placement as well which was very important to me.

I was looking for a programme that would not only help polish my leadership qualities, but also allow me to get practical experience in an organisation. For my placement, I worked as a manager for a British business organisation.

My Masters brought so many changes in my personality and leadership qualities. If you’re looking to progress in your career or pursue a new one, I think it’s the best choice you could go for.

Asma Qazi

MBA graduate

Why did you want to study abroad?

Studying in a different country interested me because it allowed me to meet lots of different people from different cultures and gave me the chance to talk to them, work with them, and learn from them.

When I first decided to go into business, I found it was difficult to make the step into the industry as a woman in my home country, so I decided I would go abroad to learn and come back to my home country as a strong businesswoman.

These reasons, coupled with the opportunity to improve my leadership skills and progress my career, helped me make the decision to study my MBA at Edinburgh Napier.

How did the timing of your Masters work for you?

There were some people who were against my decision to study a Masters, but I really wanted to progress in my life, so I didn’t stop, and I went ahead and applied for it.

People told me that it was too late to go for a Masters but I wanted to grow and change my career, so I didn’t let it stop me. Of course, it was a big change coming from teaching into business but it’s never too late when you want to study and progress in your life, and I think it was one of the best decisions I made when I came here. I had to face lots of problems, I had to face many people, I had to stand on my decision very strongly to be here, and I think I’m going to make lots of changes when I go back home.

How was the application process?

The application process was quite easy for me because when I reached the administration team, they gave me a contact number of one of the student representatives who was from my own country. She was in contact with me throughout the application process, so I asked her different questions from time to time. She was quite helpful, she helped me find out how I could reach my GP, find schools for my kids to go to, and find accommodation and things that I needed. It was very easy to ask them anything that I was concerned about.

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How did you feel when you decided to do your Masters?

When I decided to do my MBA, I was a bit apprehensive but excited as well because I was under pressure when I was coming over here, but it was a new country and a new feeling for me, and I was starting a new life so of course I was quite excited.

The administration was in touch with me, so I wasn’t worried, and I knew that someone was going to be here to help me out. Once I entered my campus, it felt like home. There were people there to welcome me, in fact there was a person who welcomed me at the airport and brought me into the campus, so that was one of the best things because I had nothing to worry about!

Where has your Masters taken you?

My MBA opened lots of doors for me. It made me want to pursue further education as well as a career in business because I came to learn that it’s not only the theory but also the exposure and practical work that takes you further.

Through doing my Masters, my husband and I saw a huge change in my personality, and we could see how happy and confident it made me. Because of this, and the support from my lecturers, I decided to pursue a PhD at Edinburgh Napier which I am studying for now.

What advice would you give someone considering studying a Masters?

I would tell them that I had no idea that this course would take me to where I am now. Once I started doing this course, it brought so many changes in me, in my personality and in my leadership qualities, I started thinking broadly and outside of where I was, so it really changes you. If you’re looking to progress in your career or pursue a new one, I think it’s the best choice you could go for.