Hannah Anderson Knight Graduation- Mon 3 July

Queen’s student returns from life-saving volunteer work in Zambia to graduate as a doctor


Hannah Anderson-Knight has returned from Zambia to attend her graduation today (Monday 3 July) from the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences at Queen’s after ten years as a student.

Now a qualified doctor, Hannah has recently spent four weeks travelling to rural communities to teach hospitals and clinics how to use a simple life-saving device to help detect problems in pregnancy as part of the Cradle Zambia project. This once-in-a lifetime opportunity was made possible by beating off stiff competition to win the Queen’s Higginson Leadership Award, presented annually by the university to encourage a sense of social responsibility and inspirational leadership among students.

Hannah is no stranger to exploring new places. Born in Oxford, she grew up in Pittsburgh before returning to the UK, firstly to study in Scotland then settled in Belfast five years ago. She was drawn to Belfast thanks to the medical course on offer by Queen’s. “The curriculum was exactly what I wanted with the opportunity to be placed across Northern Ireland. Belfast is a great city to live in, with endless options for foodies, even more bars and it’s affordable. And I’ve enjoyed star-spotting the Game of Thrones cast.”

Hannah described her recent experience in Zambia: “Working in Zambia has been a privilege. I met people, both clinicians and patients, who achieve the unbelievable; they’ve inspired me to do and be better.” Before leaving, she has left her legacy there having managed to secure a deal to import more life-saving devices.

Following graduation, Hannah will work as a doctor in the British Army, satisfying her ambition to work in maternal and child global health as well as quenching her thirst for travel. “Working for the British Army will give me the opportunity to learn how to work with limited resources and in austere conditions, and hopefully the chance to deploy on humanitarian aid missions.”

From ‘trad’ sessions to sunny days in Botanic Gardens, Hannah reminisces about what she’ll miss about Belfast, a place she now calls home. She will always have fond memories of her time at the university, grateful for the ‘unparalleled’ support received: “From the pastoral support I received when a family member was diagnosed with cancer in first year, to the encouragement from students and staff for the Cradle Zambia project, Queen's have been available when I needed them.”

You can learn about the life-saving device at, or read about Hannah’s project at:

For media inquiries, please contact Queen’s University Communications Office, 028 9097 3091

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