Valbona Selimaj

Student spotlight details

Valbona, a full-time paediatrician with two young children, found the flexibility of the Postgraduate Diploma in Paediatric Infectious Diseases allowed her to continue her professional development with profoundly rewarding results. 

'I am a pediatrician in Clinique Saint Jean in Brussels, with special interest in pediatric infectious diseases.

'Initially, I followed the 3-day Oxford course on Infection and Immunity in Children, which was an excellent academic course. I found that all the presentations were full of insights, reflecting a deep knowledge and providing with the most recent evidence on infectious diseases and immunity. A few months later, I applied for the Postgraduate Diploma in Paediatric Infectious Diseases.

'This high-level diploma was very demanding and particularly challenging, since I had to combine it with my full time job as a pediatrician. On the other hand, distance learning gave me the necessary flexibility to continue my professional life in Brussels.

'During the course, the scientific discussions under the supervision of our professors and the study case analyses were a very valuable asset, as we could elaborate on all different theoretical, practical and scientific aspects of numerous infectious diseases.

'In addition, our tutors are world-scale distinguished experts in immunity and infectious diseases, so apart from the inspiration by their hard work and achievements in improving child health we could largely benefit from their exceptional experience and scientific insights.

'During these two years of hard work and research, we had the chance to virtually meet and get to know the other colleagues/co-students from all around the world, who brought also their experience from their home countries. We were all able to share the experience from different climatic and epidemiologic settings, which also helped us all to better understand different diseases, that otherwise we would not have the chance to examine in our practice.

'The course was very demanding throughout its 2-year duration. Each student was assigned a supervisor, who helped us in a substantial way, guiding us with very valuable comments on the written assignments and discussions on our drafts.

'The Diploma was for me an exceptional experience and an opportunity to learn in depth about infectious diseases, to approach and examine in a critical and scientific way challenging clinical situations, as well as to give the appropriate weight to the scientific evidence and research and properly use it in my everyday practice. Throughout the diploma, I could sense the everyday improvement on my clinical decision making which was profoundly rewarding.

'After completion of the Diploma, I will work as an infectious diseases specialist and combine it with clinical research.

'I am a mother of two, and I worked as a paediatrician throughout the period of the diploma. I would like to strongly recommend this course to all paediatricians , particularly colleagues with young children (who shouldn’t be discouraged from the challenging study time) who want to further enhance their knowledge and strengthen their understanding and research capacities on infectious diseases.

'The Diploma in Paediatric Infectious Diseases can be an excellent step towards an academic doctoral research, upgrading professional career, but above all it is a valuable advancement towards making us better paediatricians.'


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