Jaquille Haribhai-Thompson

Jaquille found the mathematical field to have a range of interesting topics and career options for him to pursue.

Photograph portrait of Jaquille Haribhai-Thompson, taken infront of white brick

Leaving high school, Jaquille hal the impression that mathematics was a narrow field. After taking some math papers as prerequisites for his physics major, he discovered the range of interesting topics and career options to pursue. This led to a love of the subject and resulted in Jaquille adding it as his second major.

Mathematical Logic was a course that particularly stuck with Jaquille. “Understanding the pure mathematics sometimes didn’t come naturally to me, but some of the concepts we covered blew my mind once I understood them,” he says. The challenge of learning difficult concepts and solving challenging problems was his favorite part of the subject. The lecturers were a critical support group to him, enthusiastically covering the material and clearly explaining mathematical concepts.

Jaquille’s advice for prospective students is to keep an open mind when you start your degree. You might enjoy some subjects unexpectedly and make changes throughout your study. His time at Te Herenga Waka – Victoria University of Wellington became more than a learning experience for Jaquille who undertook work as a lab demonstrator, summer scholarships in radiation dosimetry and other volunteering experiences. He found the work incredibly rewarding and invaluable in developing work experience without the pressure of grades and assessments.

Now Jaquille is studying medicine at the University of Otago. Although the link between mathematics and medicine may seem strange to some, the skills he has developed in logic and problem solving have been easily transferable in the subject – particularly in areas like making a diagnosis. Skills with quantitative data, programming and report writing also frequently make an appearance in the field. “I love being able to apply science and practical skills to improve and save people’s lives,” says Jaquille