UCL Qatar master’s degree students have returned from a set of high-profile work placements to bring international best practice to libraries, galleries, museums and
private firms in Qatar.
Students of MA in Library and Information Studies (LIS) and MA in Museums and Gallery Practice (MGP) programmes have spent the last few weeks working with experts at the British Library in London, the National Science and Media Museum (NSMM) in Bradford, UK, and the OPEC Information Centre, Vienna, Austria.
The Museum of Islamic Art (MIA) also welcomed a number of UCL Qatar students, further demonstrating the museum’s status as a world-class
Work placements are a requirement for any student undertaking a master degree with UCL Qatar. They form part of the university’s commitments to prepare its students for professional life and contribute to the development of Qatar’s cultural heritage sector and its growing information and knowledge management workforce.
Students such as Maryam Abdulla al-Thani, who is undertaking an MA in LIS, travelled to Vienna to work at the Opec Information Centre, gained hands-on experience in information management, conservation, digitisation of documents, and cataloguing. She now hopes to put the skills she learnt into practice.
She said, “The placement is especially important as it has helped me improve my technical skills that are necessary for my future career. I can’t wait to share my experiences with my fellow students and colleagues. Thanks to UCL Qatar for this
Her fellow LIS MA student Mahmoud Mahmoud was placed at the British Library in London, where he learned about the Qatar Digital Library project – a joint British Library, Qatar Foundation and Qatar National Library digital archiving initiative.
Mahmoud said, “I already had a broad understanding of the theories behind library and information studies, but during my placement I had the opportunity to apply and practice those theories in an internationally renowned work environment – a challenging
yet rewarding experience.”
Suzanna Migrhani, a Museum and Gallery Practice student who travelled to the UK to work at the NSMM in Bradford, remarked: “I got the chance to work on several projects simultaneously, which gave me a holistic picture of the NSMM, and its many programmes, exhibitions, and outreach efforts. I was impressed with museum’s sense of civic duty and curatorial thinking – two themes which I will now
apply to my studies in Doha.”
UCL uses its global links to provide students based in Qatar with access to international expertise and a chance to expand their professional network.
Dr Milena Dobreva, who is co-ordinating the MA in LIS, said, “I am very proud of our students for completing placement programmes at such world leading institutions. It’s important for them to now use these experiences to apply what they have learnt to their studies at UCL Qatar and their respective current and future workplaces.”
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