Published on 26/07/2022
Saima Sultana


  • Saima Sultana graduated with a first class MPharm Honours in Pharmacy
  • She was one of the first to complete the Pathway to Healthcare programme before gaining a place at Aston University
  • Saima will start her new trainee pharmacy role at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital.

An Aston University graduate, who was in one of the first cohorts of students to take part in the Pathway to Healthcare programme whilst studying for their A levels, has graduated from Aston University with a first class MPharm Honours degree in Pharmacy.

Saima Sultana, from Small Heath in Birmingham, graduated at a ceremony held at Eastside Rooms in Birmingham on Thursday 21 July. 

The Pathway to Healthcare programme was launched in 2016. It is a donor-funded 18-month programme that works with A level students from less advantaged areas across the West Midlands to equip them with the skills and the support needed to gain a place on a medical or health-related degree.

Sarah Fullwood, pathways manager at Aston University said:

“Saima was from the first batch of students to complete the Pathway to Healthcare programme, and her graduating from Aston University demonstrates its success and shows the lasting impact the Pathway programme has on its students. 

“In 2019, we developed a second suite of pathway programmes focusing on engineering and technology (STEM), business and law. Since their inception, we have engaged with over 5,000 learners from over 30 schools and colleges in the region.  

Saima said: “I am super proud of myself for finishing university. I'm also very grateful to all the Aston University staff and others I have met along the way, who have kindly helped me with my journey into and through higher education.  

“As one of the first people in my family to study a STEM subject, the extra support provided by the pathway programme staff made it seem like a realistic possibility for me to apply and get into university. 

“Although I will miss being a student and learning about the things I enjoy, I am excited that from the end of July, I will be starting my trainee pharmacist role at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital.”

To find out about studying pharmacy at Aston University please visit our website. 

Notes to editors

About Aston University

Founded in 1895 and a University since 1966, Aston is a long established university led by its three main beneficiaries – students, business and the professions, and our region and society. Aston University is located in Birmingham and at the heart of a vibrant city and the campus houses all the university’s academic, social and accommodation facilities for our students. Saskia Loer Hansen is the interim Vice-Chancellor & Chief Executive.

Aston University was named University of the Year 2020 by The Guardian and the University’s full time MBA programme has been ranked in the top 100 in the world in the Economist MBA 2021 ranking. The Aston MBA has been ranked 12th in the UK and 85th in the world. 

For media inquiries in relation to this release, contact Rebecca Hume, Press and Communications Manager, on (+44)7557 745416 or email:

Be first to get the latest news, research and expert comment from Aston by following us on Twitter

Need an expert for your story? Browse our expert directory


Sue Smith, Head of Press and Communications
    0121 204 3521

Sam Cook, Press and Communications Manager
    0121 204 5065

Rebecca Hume, Press and Communications Manager
    0121 204 5159

Nicola Jones, Press and Communications Manager

Alternatively, email

News Archive

Press Team

Media Resources

Brexit Directory

The Conversation

Expert Directory

Share this Article: