Love of learning drives graduate to collect his tenth Masters degree!

One Masters student completed an extraordinary feat when he graduated on Tuesday 11 December, by bringing his list of postgraduate qualifications to an astonishing tally of ten Masters degrees.

Farhat Hussain collects his tenth Masters degree

Farhat Hussain collects his tenth Masters degree

Farhat A Hussain, aged 42 from Birmingham, received an MSc in Conservation of Historic Gardens and Cultural Landscapes, to add to the nine existing Masters degrees and other qualifications he has gained over the past 17 years from 10 UK universities.

His subjects span history, archaeology, conservation studies, international politics, sociology and education studies. In addition to his Masters degrees he also holds a PGCE in history, a postgraduate diploma in the Social History of Medicine and other specialist courses.

Farhat has studied at the Universities of Cambridge, Durham, Exeter, Manchester, Warwick, Edinburgh, York and London, and holds an offer to study for a research degree at the University of Oxford.

He combines his studying with consultancy work in the Gulf States. Remarkably he now hopes to study for a PhD at Bath and is already planning a further two PhDs, as he doesn’t feel that a single PhD will satisfy all his areas of interest.

He said: “Some people may think I’m a bit crazy but I have a real love for knowledge. It’s not about what is immediately practical, such as studying to get a particular job, it’s a means to helping me understand more about various aspects of the history of civilisation. I believe acquiring and disseminating knowledge of the achievements of civilisations is a profound privilege. It has also been fascinating to experience changes in technology and aspects of how we study over the past 20 years.

“Postgraduate studies enrich my pioneering work and approach to history and heritage, which focuses on the cultural interaction of different civilisations via various medium ranging from trade and diplomacy to science, medicine and much else.”

Farhat writes extensively on his subjects and lectures across the world, for the general public, businesses and at universities. He estimates he has written one and a half million words in addition to his course work and that he has spent a total of three and a half years abroad on research trips in pursuit of knowledge of the history of civilizations from North America to China.

He has just completed over 400,000 words on the history of hospitals throughout the world, a major work on the Vikings and their relationship with other cultures, and has had other titles published including Enhancing Study Skills. He is currently writing a guide on motivation, alongside other works including Cultural Interaction and The Fabric of European History.

He is very keen to ensure that knowledge is shared across society and in recent years has enthusiastically promoted Britain’s universities to students, potential students, professionals and institutions across the world.

Speaking about his time at Bath, he said: “I really did enjoy being at Bath and in fact it was the most enjoyable Masters I have undertaken combining first class lectures and splendid visits across Britain’s rich historic landscape. It’s a superb place – the city, the setting, the location, the organisation, expertise, environment and the facilities, including a first class library. The University is so compact and convenient.

“I have travelled the world and in my opinion, whilst I have great respect for academic institutions the world over, British universities lead the world with regard to standards, specialisation and so much else, and that is something the whole country should be proud of.”

Dr Marion Harney, Director of Studies of Farhat’s MSc course, in  the University’s Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering said: “Farhat's achievement of 10 postgraduate qualifications is remarkable by any standards. Farhat was a good, conscientious student who combined the challenges of postgraduate study with his professional role as an adviser in the Arab states. He was a charming and delightful student who enjoyed his studies here at Bath to the extent that he now intends to pursue a Doctoral thesis on Moorish gardens and their influence.”

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