James joined the Amos Bursary in 2013 and started his personal statement in his application with the following words: ‘I have a dream. My dream is to one day graduate from a Russell Group University with a degree in Medicine.’ He also said ‘medicine would enable me to inspire other young people who feel they are at a disadvantage or have been deprived of hope and the necessary opportunities required to accomplish their aspirations.’
Since joining the Amos Bursary he has exceeded our expectations and is an invaluable asset not only to the Amos Bursary, but also to the schools where he is a role model to students, and King’s College London.
Speaker and mentor
He has been true to his word. His contribution to the community has been outstanding. He has used his passion for Medicine to motivate and support many students. He is an Ambassador for the Amos Bursary speaking on many platforms and many events to young people on chasing your dreams. He is a regular panel member at the annual Reach Society Careers Conference where he is the youth representative on the medical panel and also one of the Amos Bursary team of undergraduates who speaks at the Perfect 10 workshop.
He regularly attends schools’ careers evenings promoting Medicine and since being at King’s he has provided 1-1 support to students with their applications, including mock interview sessions and has been successful in getting younger students into Medicine. He realised that there was a gap in the pastoral support offered to younger students and has given his time freely to support younger students in the Amos Bursary and is the Student Lead for our year 12 and 13 students. In this capacity he maintains contact with the younger students encouraging them in all aspects of their preparation for A levels and University. He attends AB Learning and Development sessions for the students, advises them and supports our students considering a career in Medicine. He uses his mathematical expertise to support students who require additional support and has tutored from GCSE to A level maths for a number of years.
Widening Participation and KCL x AB Conference
James joined King’s College London in 2015 and immediately started to work closely with the Widening Participation team. He felt very strongly that the number of British students of African and Caribbean descent attending King’s College needed to be addressed. He is of Caribbean heritage and recognised that he was a rare commodity. At King’s College he is involved with Widening Participation as an ambassador and is also an Access to Medicine Ambassador, delivering and running workshops with children from year 4–13 that have ranging abilities and come from varying backgrounds.
In 2015 James spent three months in The Gambia where he assisted with the PROLIFICA project. PROLIFICA stands for the Prevention of Liver Fibrosis and Cancer in Africa. The aim is to show that, with effective screening, treatment and prevention of Hepatitis B, the incidence of liver cancer will decrease accordingly. He learned and developed a plethora of laboratory and clinical skills, which he found life changing. While in the Gambia he visited various different orphanages, helping to broaden his cultural awareness. He was able to interact with the children in the community and decided that he wanted and needed to teach basic English and Maths to children whom, otherwise, would not get any form of education. Also, with the help of staff from Imperial College London, some locals and another student, he made a donation to an under resourced orphanage in a rural part of The Gambia and also to a local school.
He has completed internships at Aviva. The first one was at Aviva’s Digital Garage in December 2016, after winning a competition that the Garage had put on in the summer during a day workshop. He then sought to independently arrange another internship in July/ August 2017 at Aviva Health because it combined his passion for Medicine and technology, while allowing him to get real-world work exposure at one of the largest insurance companies in the world. He was brought in to independently consult Aviva Health on ways they could improve the services they provided and how they could offer more to their customers.
This year James has secured an internship with the Widening Participation department at King’s, where he will be responsible for developing and leading the summer school held at King’s. He has also been asked to help create the BME strategy for King’s which looks at strategies to make King’s a more inclusive place for all of its BME students. To further develop his leaderships skills, he completed the Aleto Leadership Programme (formerly the Powerlist Leadership Programme) in July 2017.
I am a firm believer in the idea that we all have a purpose in life; I believe that my purpose is to better the lives of as many people as possible and I welcome all opportunities to do so. The present is the future. What we are living today is based upon what has happened years before us. What we do today, will impact what happens in years to come.’