Master's Program: Testimonials

A word from our current students:

Vignesh Sakthivel, full-time student UK (start 2009):
“In one word, I found this MSc programme immensely helpful, but it is also a kind of curse. If you learn to read and write then you are cursed to read whatever words come across your eyes for the rest of your life. Similarly, doing this programme will make you to challenge your current practice and urge your service managers and directors in addiction field for a change. It may cause you problems if it is not done tactfully! Where ever you are and whatever you do in substance misuse perhaps you are preoccupied by your current practice and hurdles of day to day practice. Doing this programme would definitely give you a chance to see the international perspective, a broad view, and make you a specialist and leader in substance misuse.

Don’t be surprised to recognise the heavy weights in the field as your lecturers if you have been in substance misuse field for some time and reasonably updated with current and past breakthroughs . One cannot get a better choice of lecturers. Be prepared for the entourage transatlantic and transpacific across the world to visit the renowned specialists and scientists in the field of substance misuse.

If you are in a dilemma about the full time and part time options then I would urge you to critically evaluate your current situation and take a worst case scenario. If you are a busy practitioner and a family man then you may find the full time option very demanding. At some point, you may find yourself falling in an abyss when the standing point is torn apart between clinical practice, family and the programme. However, your determination and enthusiasm may lend you a hand, and I am very sure that you will get another hand from the programme organisers and supervisors. The faculties are very understanding, friendly, informal, easily accessible and supportive who wants you to get across successfully. That’s the bigger strength of this programme. Taking a part time option may be relaxing and give you a chance to enjoy the programme better.

Whatever it is, your career in addiction field won’t be same after completing this program. This programme is international in the true sense in that you would get to meet specialists from different parts of the world and compare and question your current practice, and also your international mates'. Overall it is a great experience and career investment!”

Dr Vignesh Sakthivel, MD, MRCPsych (UK).


Michel, full-time student Canada (start 2009)
“After all of this is done, I would like to offer my services as a Canadian representative for the IPAS Programme. I spoke with a few colleagues in the trade and some have hinted interest in the courses. This course's quality is sine qua non as far as I am concerned. My comparison scale is based on the previous courses that I've followed. You have raised the bar very high!”


Some personal comments from students on the Public health course

Jashim, part-time student Bangladesh (start 2009)
Dear Betsy Turf, Take my regards. I can't stop without expressing my gratitude to you. You know my teachers were always unable to keep me engaged for 16 hours in study every day but you did that from thousands mile away!! I even can't believe myself. I feel proud being your student.

Yatan, part-time scholarship student India (start 2009)
Dear Betsy, It indeed was a good learning experience. I have had some exposure to addiction medicine but the issues related to public health are usually not given much emphasis. the current module introduced me to many new issues. And it seems that all the learning one has on addiction has to ultimatley translates in to these public health issues to benifit the public.

Thanks for the module and your supervision. Looking forward to work with you again in future.

Penny, part-time scholarship student USA (start 2009)
Thank you for the experience. I have learned so much. Penny


Meet some of our ISAS scholarship winners

Yatan Balhara, MBBS, MD, DNB is a Senior Resident Doctor in the Department of Psychiatry and National Drug Dependence Treatment Center (NDDTC) at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Dehli, India.

Arian Boci, MPH is currently a Program Officer with USAID and the Academy of Educational Development (based in Washington, DC) on a project entitled "Communication for Change Behavior in Family Planning in Albania." Prior to becoming Program Officer, Mr. Boci served as a local consultant and AED Country Representative on the same project in his native Albania.

Ruel Malata, M.D. is the founder and director of the New Life 2000 Residential Community, a treatment facility for substance abusers located in Iloilo City in the Philippines, and a Fellow of the Philippine Psychiatric Association.

Penny Lu Dean, B.S., C.S.A.C is a nationally certified Substance Abuse Counselor at the Mount Rogers Community Services Board in Galax, Virginia, a rural Appalachian Mountain community.

Abdugadir Eisa, M.B.B.S., is a Resident Physician in the Addiction Department of the Al-Amal Complex for Mental Health in the Teaching Hospital, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.