The Bartlett Development Planning Unit


Safiya Jones

In a context where higher education is a commodity, which can be bought and sold, it is often those with a lack of finances who suffer. Within this context, one of the few ways in which this trend has been able to be diverted is through scholarships. I would not describe myself as one of the poorest, but I am most certainly not one of the elite.

The Bartlett Scholarship has, however, allowed me to experience an elite education. Instead of stopping at achieving a first class at under graduate from the London School of Economics, I have had the opportunity to grow and develop even further and at the top institution of UCL. I am extremely thankful to have been awarded this scholarship to study MSc in Development Administration and Planning (DAP), as I simply would not have been able to study my MSC without it. I stress that my experience studying at The Bartlett was invaluable, having both an academic and practical impact. Academically, I was able to have the time to enjoy and excel at my studies, achieving high grades and thriving from creative and excellent discussions.

A high standard of teaching and guided reading aided this broad and in depth experience. In a more practical sense, I was able to devote any remaining time to the charity “Student Minds”. This is a national charity, operating through societies within many UK universities, including UCL. It holds a key aim of supporting students who may be experiencing mental health difficulties. This is both through advocacy work, but also through facilitating support sessions on University campuses.

I learned a great deal from the training and practical experience we were given. Through facilitating sessions I not only helped students facing mental health difficulties but also gained a deep understanding of the affect of policy on students lives. In addition to these benefits, I was able to develop friendships for life, with people from across the globe. This has not only enabled the additional broadening of my cultural scope but also allowed me to experience globalisation at its best.

Connected to this I aim to progress into a career in either the non-for profit or policy sector. This is aimed at harnessing such hope with a focus on striving for equality, social inclusion and embracing the rich benefits that a connected world has to offer. I am also to progress within Student Minds, becoming a voluntary mentor for new students running support sessions.  In a nutshell, The Bartlett Scholarship has allowed me to have a rich and stress-free education, abundant in both academic and practical opportunity and success. I have developed enormously not only as a student but as a global citizen, making friendships for life and helping others along the way.