London Connection Q&A: Ayesha Tariq

Peter Quinn talks to Karachi-based BSc Business graduate Ayesha Tariq about thinking creatively, forming connections and writing her first textbook
Ayesha Tariq
'To be a graduate of the University of London is a matter of great honour and prestige': Ayesha Tariq
This degree has allowed me to challenge my perception and explore the 'whys' and the 'hows' of the world around us

Why did you choose to study with the University of London International Programmes?
Primarily because of its international recognition and thought provoking study content. This degree has allowed me to challenge my perception and explore the 'whys' and the 'hows' of the world around us. It is perhaps the most cost-efficient and flexible way to gain an internationally recognised degree.

What are the particular skills and insights that you gained from taking the BSc Business degree?
The main thing that I learnt was how to think creatively. There is no one right answer to a problem and a situation can be approached from multiple perspectives. I also realised that in order to do well in exams, I had to form connections between ideas where none existed and communicate them with clarity, in a logical order. These skills are immensely helpful in my job in which I frequently compare courses of action and structure marketing content that directly connects with the reader.

"Balancing studying and writing a publication was a daunting task at first"

You are author of the CIE-approved textbook Islam in Modern Perspective (Stallion Publications, 2009). How did you balance writing the book with your academic study?
Balancing studying and writing a publication was a daunting task at first. I wrote the first draft of the book while I was preparing for my O Level Islamiyat exam so that was manageable. I worked on it mostly during summer and winter vacations and in the beginning of the school terms when the workload was relatively lighter. The key to this accomplishment is strong focus and motivation. I 'owned' this project and was bent upon making it successful and surprising everyone who was doubtful about its success given my tender age.

What is your top tip for someone who is considering taking this degree?
That top tip would be 'discipline'. This degree requires a lot of conscientiousness and self-motivation on the part of the student. You need to give up procrastination and make yourself study 'regularly'. Private candidates are easily swayed into distractions due to the lack of an externally imposed study structure.

What does it mean to you to be a graduate of the University of London?
To be a graduate of the University of London makes me feel a person of value to the society. It is a matter of great honour and prestige.

What was it like to participate in the River of Words International Poetry and Art Contest and what did you submit?
I submitted a piece of poetry through courier. Although I did not win, it felt great to explore the avenues in which my poetry was appreciated.

Who are your favourite writers?
Paulo Coelho, Charlotte Bronte, Rumi and Khalil Gibran.

"I learnt from her that winners never give up in the face of adversity and readers are the leaders"

What are you reading at the moment?
I am reading two books these days: The power of your subconscious mind by Dr. Joseph Murphy, and The road less travelled by M. Scott Peck.

Who has been your biggest inspiration?
My mother. Since she is also an author of the Cambridge endorsed textbook, The Environment of Pakistan, she inspired me into believing in my abilities to write a textbook and inculcated the idea that achievements have less to do with age and more to do with passion and talent. I learnt from her that winners never give up in the face of adversity and readers are the leaders. She proved to me that a mother can be a girl's best friend as well as a symbol of strength and wisdom, both at the same time.

What is the one thing you would like to achieve in your lifetime?
To become the 'ideal me' that I hold in my head as a wish image.

Ayesha Tariq graduated in August 2012 with a 2.1 in BSc Business. During her first year, she enrolled at L'Ecole for Advanced Studies, a Registered Centre of the University of London. She then completed the next two years of study as an independent student, completing the degree in the minimum study period of three years.

Find out more about studying for a University of London degree in Pakistan.