Q&A: My Newham - Maryam Ali from IntoUniversity

PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 November 2018


Maryam Ali, from East Ham learning centre, Into University, discusses apprenticeships, the merits of further education and the inspiration behind her work

What’s your connection to the borough?

I work in Newham at IntoUniversity East Ham. I live in Ilford, so not too far from here. I started working here in September 2017.

What’s the best thing about working in Newham?

The community feeling. A lot of our students live very locally to where we are and they always feel welcome to come in. It seems like everyone tries to stay connected, which is kind of rare for the twenty-first century.

What’s one thing you would change?

Perhaps making sure that any kind of renovations or any changes that they are making to the community or the area are benefitting the people who live in the community. Just making sure that whatever is being changed to improve the area is continuing to improve the lives of the people who live there. It’s an issue London-wide.

Use three words to describe the area.

Vibrant, diverse and friendly.

Who is the most inspiring person you have ever met?

The best way I could answer this is, the students that we work with, especially our older students who are so close getting to university. Just seeing how ambitious and how great they are at such a young age, that would be the most inspiring thing I have seen.

If you were the prime minister, what law would you introduce?

To revamp the apprenticeship system and make sure that it’s a proper, formal way to get into a higher-paid job. I’d formalise it and make sure that more companies are involved in trying to make sure that young people have access to professional jobs, even though they haven’t entered into university.

If you were the editor of this paper, what issues in the borough would you focus on?

It would be something related to education and ensuring that there’s a pathway for those who are not going to university and that they’re well supported.

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