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Ulster University is celebrating its inaugural Medical Education Scholars, the donors and partners who made it possible, and welcoming its second cohort of scholars to the School of Medicine at the Magee campus.

Launched in 2021, the Ulster University Medical Education Scholarships have been supporting 10 students in the School of Medicine’s inaugural year, and will be supporting a further 10 in 2022-23 with this life-changing opportunity.

To date, £380,000 has been secured to support the scholarships which aim to remove the financial barrier for those from disadvantaged and underrepresented backgrounds so they can access a medical education.

The university has also been able to provide 150 students with their first stethoscope through donations from donors from across the private sector, as well as enhance the School of Medicine’s teaching and learning environment with an investment of £1.25m in the Randox Professor of Medicine.

Executive Dean of the Faculty of Life and Health Sciences, Professor Carol Curran spoke about the impact of this support:

“This support contributes significantly to our commitment to our students and staff, significantly enhancing the quality of our teaching, research and campus, whether it be by providing scholarships which enhance the student experience immeasurably, or by investing in academic quality via teaching and research positions, such as the support for the Randox Professor of Medicine.

“We were delighted to welcome our donors and partners to an event at our Magee campus in Derry recently to celebrate our inspirational students and the impact of our donor and partner’s investment in the School of Medicine.”

Rua Feehan, Heron Bros Scholar 2021, and second year Ulster University medical student, said:

“Without this financial support, I would simply not have been able to pursue a career in medicine, which has been a goal of mine as it aligned my keen interest in science and my desire to help those in need. It is very difficult to put into words how grateful I am for the generous support of The Heron Bros. Quite simply, being awarded the medical education scholarship has been life-changing.”

Foundation Dean of the School of Medicine, Professor Louise Dubras said:

“The support for the School of Medicine at the start of its journey is transformational and enhances our work immeasurably. It benefits our people, students and staff, it benefits our place, by enhancing our campus and student experience, and it benefits our partnerships, and the latter will be key to ensuring we go from strength to strength and position ourselves and the City of Derry as a go-to university for graduate entry medicine.”

Gavin Killeen, Ulster University graduate and supporter through the Gavin Killeen Medical Education Scholarship says:

“I decided to support this scholarship as I am acutely aware of the impact of the establishment of the School of Medicine in the Northwest, which will help to address the ongoing medical staff shortage and build a sustainable medical workforce for the region. I also admire the drive of these individuals, to take this brave step back into education and begin their journey to becoming a doctor. I believe that this opportunity should be made available to those with potential, not simply those with the financial means, hence why I am investing in this way to help support equity of access.”

If you’d like to find out more about supporting the School of Medicine, please contact Caroline Armstrong at