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Awards for QMUL's medical and dentistry alumni

Friday 23 September 2016

Marinos Koulouroudias, who studied at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, has won the highly prestigious University of London Gold Medal.

In addition, graduates Ahmed Al-Baiyya and Noor Khalid Mohammed Al-Ani Sharif were both awarded the ‘Runner up’ award for Dentistry.

The Gold Medal examination is held annually to identify the medical and dentistry candidates who have most distinguished themselves at their final examinations.

Marinos competed against over 20 of the best medical students in London, and faced a panel of six professors, to answer a range of intricate questions on Obstetrics/Gynaecology, Pathology, Paediatric Surgery, General Practice, Pharmacology and Medicine.

On receiving the award, Marinos said: “There is very little one can do in the way of preparing for such an exam. There is no syllabus and no past papers. Members of the academic faculty at Barts have been exceptionally helpful in coaching me, but I think the most important determinant of my success was the sum total of my interactions over the past six years with lecturers, colleagues, doctors, and above all, patients and their families.”

“The Gold Medal is a glittering recognition of potential and hard work. But what I really want to achieve in my future is compassionate care in my clinical work, and advancement of our collective knowledge in my academic work.”

Ahmed Al-Baiyya and Noor Khalid Mohammed Al-Ani Sharif, the two top ranking graduands were nominated to represent Queen Mary for the University of London Gold medal viva examinations in June 2016.

A team of 18 clinical staff from the Institute of Dentistry dedicated their time generously to prepare the students in the various areas of their individual expertise.  The short two-week revision preparation ensured that they felt able to answer all questions posed to them in the viva examination.

Noor Sharif described the experience as: "One of, if not the best experience I had during dental school. It’s daunting at first to think that you have to go back to revising. There wasn’t much that both of us couldn’t answer, as the university definitely prepares you well. It’s the confidence which they’re looking for, not just the knowledge as most will have that. It’s an amazing experience".

Ahmed Al-Baiyaa, an international student, found a ‘new home’ at QMUL which allowed him to “overcome all the difficulties I had experienced in Iraq at a time of war and embrace the future with more positivity and motivation.” He said: “I learned that no matter what the circumstances are, if you have a dream and are truly passionate about it, you can make it happen. I had the best time at the graduation ceremony; what a rewarding feeling to finally see your hard work paying off.”

Ahmed obtained a distinction in all his exams with honours and was awarded multiple prizes including the Principal's prize and Dean's prize for outstanding achievement. He was also awarded the title of 'Best Overall Student’ for his performance in Year Five. Ahmed considered it the ultimate honour to be nominated to represent QMUL at the University of London Gold Medal competition for Dentistry.

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