Recent graduate, Asma Atef Mohamed Othman, tells us why she chose to study an MSc in Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship, her experience of her time at LSE and her plans to create impact in the future.
Name: Asma Atef Mohamed Othman
Programme studied and year of graduation: MSc in Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship – 2022
Tell us about yourself.
I came to the wonderful city of London from the Bride of the Mediterranean Sea, Alexandria.
I am currently working as an Executive Director for an engineering and technology consulting firm located in Alexandria, and a consultant at the OECD working under the division Policy Coherence for Sustainable Development. I earned an MSc and BSc degree from Alexandria University in Architectural Engineering and Urban Planning. During my study years, I published a number of international publications. I have previously worked as a teaching assistant and then assistant lecturer in the Architectural Engineering department at two well-known institutions across the Middle East; Arab Academy for Science Technology and Maritime Transport and Alexandria University.
I have also worked as an urban planner and contributed to planning and designing rehabilitation projects for heritage sites in Cairo and New Valley, Egypt.
I keep pushing my limits and always go the extra mile to accomplish my goals. I view myself being a highly analytical and critical-thinking person with a keen interest in social and economic debates. On a personal note, I am hungry for ever for new experiences, adventures and horizons.
Why did you choose to study your course?
The 2008 Financial Crisis, the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Egyptian Pound Floatation, and the various ongoing global crisis; these are stark reminders that global challenges are endless and our positive change towards these challenges is indispensable. This is what drove me to want to study a degree in Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Being born as an African woman in a middle-class community with limited resources and growing up during these challenges has driven me to be an active creator of positive change. My aim is to bridge the gap in technology accessibility in Africa and to help individuals access better opportunities, so they could become a force for global positive change. Studying Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship has equipped me with many resources and skills to not only think about profit maximisation but also about creating impact which has given me the skills to create sustainable social change.
How did your DoM degree help you get your current role?
I believe that the holistic approach that the Department of Management takes in teaching both the science, and the art of how to manage resources helped me in both my role as an Executive Director and as a consultant working in Policy Coherence. Alongside teaching the subject matter, the course also gave me invaluable skills in organisational behaviour, economics, finance, marketing, international business, innovation in information technology, and so much more. Additionally, being given the opportunity to practically apply these learnings during a consulting project, which was part of our program, gave me hands-on experience which enabled me to undertake these roles.
What was your greatest takeaway from studying at DoM?
The importance of building strong team and life relationships for growth.
During the program, through many group projects, even with students from other programs within DoM, you learn how much is important to build strong connections with your team members to reach your goals and achieve success. It transforms the team to an orchestra rather than thinking and working individually. Also, studying with an international cohort has taught me how to understand and be connected to other cultures and experiences. To me the biggest takeaway has been understanding the importance of a connected team and strong relationships.
…you learn how much is important to build strong connections with your team members to reach your goals and achieve success.
What is one piece of advice/tip you would give to students starting their programme?
Try to learn from each experience you pass by, either a school class, a social activity or even a trip. Each experience will be a lifetime blessing and a lesson.
Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
I see myself contributing to bridging the digital gap in Africa, especially in education, through providing technological services for African students and individuals. I will achieve this by scaling the firm I lead and using the gained skills and knowledge from my studies to reach my goal of bridging this gap in Africa and globally.
Furthermore, I aspire to influence higher education’s policy-shaping in Egypt and globally in order to include education technology as a right for students regardless of their economic status or geographical location. By being an LSE graduate student, I believe I would make a global lasting impact on tomorrow’s technology and higher education by enabling students and individuals around the world and making this a permanent necessity.
What was your favourite study/hang out spot?
I loved the library. It is not only about reading a book, using a computer or studying, but also about the encouragement and the high spirit you feel when you are surrounded by great minds and aspiring students from around the world. It also has different setting decorations which have encouraged me making new friends, discussing a subject or having a work meeting there.
What song/film/tv show reminds you of DoM and why?
I would say “Pursuit of Happiness”. For me, the story of Chris shows that determination can make dreams come true and that character and attitude are essential qualities for success as a professional in management and leadership.
Social Media handles:
This was my last presentation during our programme. My team and I were presenting our 1- year project as consultants for the non-profit organisation, MPI-Kenya.
This photo has been taking during my trip to the Great Orme, Wales after our summer term.
This photo has been taking during my trip to the beautiful city, Bath during our April break. In front of The Cross Bath.
Learn more about the MSc Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship programme
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