I am Ahmed Al-Ghamdi, from Saudi Arabia. My country is located in the Middle East between the Arabic Gulf and the Red Sea, with a population of 26,131,703 (2011), which includes 5,576,076 non-nationals. The religion is Islam and the language is Arabic.
In 2002 I moved to work in Makkah city. Makkah is the holy city of Islam and the direction in which all Muslims in the world should offer their prayers. The interesting thing in this city is that during the year we have two Islamic occasions, so we receive from three to four million people from different countries. And they all wear the same dress, doing the same procedures, in the same time and the same places.
Therefore, as nursing staff I participate with other health workers to offer good health care during these occasions, including; first aid, clinical, hospital admissions, operations etc. I found it very rewarding and a great experience.
Now we go back to my life story. I worked as a nurse for eighteen years in different departments. Most of my experience was in primary health care services. I tried my best to get a scholarship from the Ministry of Health to study for a masters degree in nursing but unfortunately, the Ministry of Health informed me that at that time they support nurses to study bachelor degrees only. So I decided to study a masters degree by funding myself. It was a difficult stage as I am a father of four and I have a lot of money commitments. But with good planning and the support of my (great) wife I was able to schedule things. So I travelled to Australia and completed a master’s degree in Nursing Administration. After completion of the study I went back to work again.
Then I thought that the masters degree is a way to get a PhD and I felt that if I got a PhD I will reach the levels of a good researcher. I believe researches can contribute to the development of Saudi nursing. I tried again to get a scholarship, but unfortunately I failed due to the same reasons as before. So I decided to resign from my job in Ministry of Health. I had two acceptances to study a PhD from two universities in Australia, but I decided to join Cardiff University to study my PhD for several reasons. The first reason is that I like change because I hold a bachelor degree and masters from Australia. The second reason is that the strength of the Cardiff University system in Saudi society. The third reason is that British education has very good researches, and this is what I want to learn. Now I have got a job in Taif University as a lecturer, so I am a full-time PhD student fully funded from Taif University.
In fact, life here in Cardiff is enjoyable and beautiful. People here are very friendly and they appreciate and respect the different cultures. In additional to that, the beauty of nature that contains the green mountains, rivers, and wonderful beaches.