Interview with QMU graduate: Dr Haider Darain, PhD Physiotherapy & Rehabilitation Sciences
Dr Haider Darain, 38, from Peshawar in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan, graduated with a PhD in Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Sciences from QMU in 2015.
Dr Darain is a Physical Therapist by profession and graduated with an MSc Health and Physical Education from Karachi University in 2005.
Initially, Dr Darain started his career as a clinical physical therapist and worked with children with disabilities and patients of all ages with spinal cord injuries in Pakistan.
After his clinical training, Dr Darain soon switched over to an academic career and started teaching at university level, including working as a Lecturer at the Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Khyber Medical University in Peshawar before pursuing a PhD at QMU.
Dr Darain is now an Assistant Professor with additional charge as a Director at Khyber Medical University.
Why did you decide to study for your PhD at QMU?
“I was selected for a PhD scholarship by the government of Pakistan in 2010 and started searching for a PhD course to enhance my research skills.
“The academic and research profile, guidance and prompt response of the academic staff at QMU definitely helped me make my decision to study in Edinburgh.
“I was already working in academic environment when I was selected for the PhD and at that time, there was no institute offering PhD in physical therapy in Pakistan. Therefore, QMU offered one of the best opportunities for me to complete my PhD and strengthen research in physical therapy in the country.
“QMU is a much friendlier size compared to other larger universities around the UK. There is close collaboration amongst the postgraduate students with many familiar faces to you if you study in QMU, Edinburgh.
How did you find the workload?
“I found that the amount of work I was doing during PhD was manageable and I was fully supported at university and hospital level by both of my academic and clinical supervisors.”
How do you think your PhD from QMU has equipped you with the knowledge and skills to develop your career?
“Before pursuing my PhD at QMU, I was not familiar with research and hadn’t had any papers published in scientific journals. The research skills I developed during my PhD at QMU has enabled me to publish more than 20 articles in national and international journals.
“I’m now working as Principal Investigator (PI) and Co-Principal Investigator (CoPI) for two of the projects funded by higher education commission of Pakistan.”
What did you do after graduating from QMU?
“When I completed my PhD from QMU, I went back to Pakistan and joined the Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Khyber Medical University in Peshawar as an Assistant Professor. After few months, I was given an additional charge as Director of the institute.
“I’m planning to do my post-doctorate in the coming years and I will definitely contact my PhD supervisor at QMU for guidance and facilitation. If I got a chance to do my post-doctorate, I would much prefer to do it at QMU.”
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