Published: 20 October 2023 at 10:00
#WeAreInternational highlights the positive impact of international students in the UK
Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) student Charles Nwachukwu has a starring role in Universities UK International’s new #WeAreInternational: Transforming Lives campaign, dedicated to highlighting the amazing contribution international students are making to the UK and their local communities.
On average, each of the 650 parliamentary constituencies in the UK is £58 million better off thanks to international students – equivalent to approximately £560 per citizen.
Charles, pictured, is an international postgraduate student from Nigeria. He studied his degree in medicine at Niger Delta University and worked as a medical practitioner at a not-for-profit organisation for seven years. He is now studying an MSc in Public Health and Community Wellbeing at ARU; a degree he hopes will lead to a career within the NHS.
Charles came to study in the UK due to the quality and prestige of its higher education system. His postgraduate degree at ARU focuses on improving community health and researching disease mitigation. He chose to study his MSc in Public Health and Community Wellbeing with aspirations to work as a clinician in the NHS. He said:
“I want to use my passion and education to give back to the community. Above all else, I want to give back.”
In Nigeria, Charles founded a not-for-profit organisation to increase access to healthcare for women and children in underserved communities and volunteered at another not-profit organisation that raised awareness of mental health and connected users to mental health professionals.
He has brought with him to the UK his passion for volunteering, where alongside his studies, Charles juggles multiple volunteering roles. His dedication has been recognised with an award from ARU for spending over fifty hours of his time volunteering during the academic year.
This includes Charles giving up his time to support the university’s flagship Students at the Heart of Knowledge Exchange (SHoKE) project, working with civic organisations such as Cambridgeshire County Council, Huntington District Council and Diabetes UK to help solve societal challenges such as leveraging organisations’ social value and reducing their carbon footprint. He also uses his knowledge of social media to create informative content to help young people in the UK suffering with diabetes and fundraises for Cancer Research UK.
Speaking about his time at ARU, Charles said:
“I love the cold weather, and the prospects of going to watch live English Premier League matches. Football is a big part of who I am. If I didn't choose this path, I'd have been a pro footballer. With the cultural diversity in the UK, it seems like a home to all.”
To find out more about the #WeAreInternational: Transforming Lives campaign, visit the Universities UK International website at https://www.universitiesuk.ac.uk/what-we-do/creating-voice-our-members/campaigns/weareinternational