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MA International Development Management

Mum of three, Georgina, left her home in Tanzania, East Africa, in 2020, to study an MA in International Development Management at the University of Bradford.

She is now in the depths of her dissertation before finishing her Master’s in October 2021, with a single-minded goal – to learn new knowledge and skills that she can take back to Africa for the benefit of the communities she works in.

This is her story…

Why I chose to study in the UK

“A Master’s from the UK appealed to me because it’s compacted over one year.”

“I’m a mother of three children and a wife, so I didn’t want to be away from home and my family for too long.

"I wanted to come to the UK to improve my learning and also to better my English, as the only language we use is Swahili. In my job, I have to communicate with international organisations in English, so to become truly competent I felt I needed to live here for a while.”

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Doing it for my local community

“I work in a place where there are a lot of social and economic issues.”

“Since 2011, I’ve been working at an organisation called Caritas Archdiocese of Songea. I’m the Institution Director, so I’ve taken a sabbatical to come to the UK for a year and complete my Master’s.

“We empower communities to improve their living conditions through gender equality, development programmes, emergency relief, humanitarian assistance, and skill training to promote income-generating activities.

“Before that, I volunteered as an environmental officer in one of the Government’s offices, after completing my undergraduate degree in Geography and Environmental Studies from the University of Dar es Salaam, in 2010.”

“My job is ultimately to serve my local community and help them with the many challenges they face. I felt a Master’s and an education from the University of Bradford would improve my knowledge and help me provide better, more effective services to them when I return. I’m doing it for them.

“I was fortunate to win a place on the Chevening Scholarship. One of the requirements to be eligible for the Scholarship is to get three offers from different universities, which I did. I researched each offer a lot, and felt that Bradford was the best place for me to get my Master’s degree; it seemed like it was one of the best universities for international study."

The University’s Social Inclusion Award (2020) helped me make my decision, and the team were much more active in their communication than others - answering any questions I had and reassuring me what it would be like when I arrived. The support available really drew my attention.

My course

“I’ve learnt so much.”

“Even though I’ve come to the UK during a pandemic, attending classes online has actually been very engaging, and I’ve also been able to attend some amazing classes on campus. The academic team has been really active in helping us with any challenges and making sure we develop a broad range of different skills. I’ve also felt a lot of support from fellow students; we learn a lot from each other.

“My modules have included the economic and social aspects of achieving the development goals set by the United Nations. It’s very practical learning compared to Africa, centred on what is happening in the field, right now.

"Poverty and hunger are huge problems in our country, and I’m learning strategies to reduce this. I’m also much better informed about the indicators of development, and the assessments International Development agencies are using to measure developing countries."

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My real area of interest is how to transition into clean energy for cooking in my society. I want to lead research in this area and expand my knowledge for the benefit of the people I’m serving.

Future plans

“I’m looking forward to going back to Tanzania and implementing what I’ve learned at Bradford."

“After my Master’s I will go back to Africa to continue what I’ve been doing at Caritas, expanding from where I left off.

"I see the challenges our community faces more clearly now, and I can go deeper to provide better solutions for vulnerable people. I can ensure better life chances, provide better solutions for poverty, and I will lobby for change.

"I’ll continue working with the poorest groups of society to help them, that’s what drives me."

“I’ve had so much support from the University from day one, especially from professors but also my personal academic tutor.

"They’ve worked hard to expand my knowledge and offered me so many experiences as well. If I ever have any difficulties, my personal tutor is there for me at any time of day to help me through the challenges.”

I’ve come a long way, personally. Not only have I learnt so much academically, but I’ve also practised my communication skills and got better at public speaking. There’s so much extra-curricular activity to enrich your experience at Bradford, it goes hand-in-hand with your education.

New friends from all over the world

“You feel part of a diverse community at Bradford.”

“I’ve connected with new friends from all over the world, and my fellow Chevening scholars have been very supportive, both personally and professionally. People are so friendly, and I’ve never once felt unwelcome here. I feel at home.

“As my first experience out of Tanzania, it’s been life-changing. Everything was so different to what I knew when I arrived, I remember sharing pictures of Manchester Airport to my family when I landed! I have enjoyed being here.”

A smartly dressed person in a white jacket leaning on a window and smiling at the camera.

There's no better place

“I’d encourage people to choose Bradford.”

“If you’re an international student, there is no better place. The University’s promise on inclusion and diversity is real, it’s not just for show. You feel it as soon as you arrive.

“I would advise you to have an open mind, share your experiences, and get the most out of it. You will become extremely competent in your chosen area and leave with better life chances.”

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