Arpi’s student story: overcoming gender stereotypes

A photo of international student Arpi in a laboratory

Around the world everyone has a right to access quality health education, information and services, without discrimination. Likewise, essentials such as water, air, housing, working and environmental conditions that are safe and clean.  

And yet, for millions of people, those rights are increasingly jeopardised through conflicts, the burning of fossil fuels, diseases and disasters. In 2021, more than half the world’s population were not fully covered by essential health services. 

That’s why the theme for this year’s World Health Day, which on 7 April marks the 76th anniversary of the World Health Organisation, is My health, my right. 

At Study Group, it is our privilege to teach and support thousands of talented international students pursuing careers that will help to create a better world, address global challenges and create health equalities. 

One such student is Arpi, from Lebanon. 

Motivated by a family experience with Alzheimer’s Disease and a desire to understand and tackle it, Arpi wanted to pursue a career as a Biomedical Scientist but felt resistance to her goals as a woman.  

With Study Group’s guidance, and inspired by Elizabeth Blackwell, the first woman doctor in the western world and an alumna of Royal Holloway, University of London, Arpi completed an International Foundation Year in Life Sciences and the Environment at the Royal Holloway, University of London International Study Centre.  

Now living her dream of studying a BSc in Biomedical Sciences at the University, Arpi says: "I picked Royal Holloway, University of London because I was very attracted to the campus itself and the ranking of the degree. And because of learning the history of the university. One of the first woman doctors graduated from this university. Since I'm doing science, I liked that a lot."

Arpi's international student story: developing independence

Watch Arpi’s international student story.

Arpi helps to remind us of the importance of diversity in science. The problems we face as a global society require inclusive perspectives, approaches, thinking and global collaboration. For that, we need global citizens with international outlooks. These solutions finders, discoverers, pioneers and leaders of the future should not be restricted by gender or place and we hope Arpi’s story will encourage others to stay true to their passions; the future of our world health depends on it. As Arpi says, "Just do it. You'll have the best out of your life." 

Learn more about our international education partnerships with universities.