School of Informatics

Ammir Barakat

Ammir is in his 2nd year studying for a BSc in Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science.

Name Ammir Barakat
Degree

BSc Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science

Year 2

Why did you choose to study in Edinburgh?

Photo of Ammir Barakat

I am someone who really connects to where he lives, and Edinburgh has been the perfect home so far. It offers such a unique blend of the convenience of transport, retail, and a city scene, while also being within walking distance of some really amazing and secluded green areas. As for the University itself, its reputation and history speak for themselves. I was really impressed by how flexible they are with your degree choices, and how robust the teaching was.

Why did you choose to study Informatics?

To be honest, I did not know what I wanted to do after finishing high school. In my home country, Syria, what you study at university is directly related to your high school grades, and my grades were high enough that they guaranteed me Informatics. I chose that, not really knowing what I'd be doing, and I ended up enjoying it for 2 years, until I moved to Scotland. I then did two years of work outside of studying, until I applied to universities again. In that time, I found that I really had missed Informatics, I missed creating things, I missed the eureka moments after hours of being stuck on a problem, and I missed the "click" you get with your projects. And this is how I knew that this is something I would really enjoy.

What do you do for fun?

I cook a lot! Sometimes I spend 3-4 hours in the kitchen a day, I hope my food can one day be good enough that people would pay for it. I also love taking walks and have come to know Edinburgh and its green spaces by heart. I'm a big fan of horror movies, and would really love to see a horror society at our University soon! I also dabble in learning French from time to time and hope to be fluent in a few years.

Any tips for prospective students?

My top advice is to stay on top of things, dedicating 15 mins a day to reading emails and sorting out administrative tasks really pays off in the long run. Seek help when you need it. If you are behind academically, it's not too late to get back on track and even achieve great grades, but you need to ask for help. More importantly, take some time to breathe and relax, immerse yourself in what's around you, and don't get too caught up in your screen. Edinburgh is such a lovely city, and there's so much to  explore outside of the student bubble!