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Ria Shemar – ambassador for university education and Batonbearer

Ria Shemar, from West Bromwich, is a final year medical student at the University of Birmingham.

She’s passionate about young people achieving their dreams and going to university, no matter what their background is.

Her own higher education journey was borne out of attending two initiatives organised by the University of Birmingham:

  • the Academic Enrichment  Programme – a five-day residential that gives Year 12 students an insight into the full university experience including taster lectures on a range of academic subjects, living in accommodation and new social experiences, and;
  • Access to Birmingham (A2B) which supports applicants who have little or no experience of higher education.

As well as being busy with her demanding medical studies, Ria now acts as an ambassador for both schemes supporting Year 12 students at summer schools, writing content for university marketing materials and assisting with interview sessions as well as supporting the next cohort of A2B students.

Her drive and determination is ensuring that more bright students, are following in her footsteps and achieving their dream of going to university.

We’re proud of her work: widening access to higher education, helping young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to aim higher and achieve their dreams. She believes this work is so important, particularly for medicine, because she says we need future doctors who understand real life issues and appreciate diversity.

Ria says she is really excited and honoured to be carrying the Baton in West Bromwich. Find out more about our incredible day when the Queen’s Baton Relay came to Sandwell!