I’m catching up with Professor Asif Ahmed, Executive Dean of Aston Medical School, to find out why I’m here at Aston University.
Professor Ahmed: Ed, Aston University has a long tradition of working with Birmingham Children’s Hospital for research and the care of young patients. Aston Medical School is the university’s newest School opening to undergraduates in 2018 and we are hoping to forge new links with the hospital.
But why me?
We love your health theme and the clever link between your name and that of John Hall Edwards who pioneered the use of X-ray in surgery over 120 years ago. Did you know he did this while working at the old Birmingham General Hospital, now the home of Birmingham Children’s Hospital?
That’s interesting. Anything else?
As a medical school we are wholeheartedly behind The Big Sleuth campaign because it engages everyone, is fun and inspirational. The public art trail is all about improving health and wellbeing through exercise and fresh air and spending quality time together with family and friends. We’re keen to promote positive messages that help tackle childhood obesity, early onset diabetes and social exclusion.
The medical school also runs a widening participation programme – the Sir Doug Ellis Pathway to Healthcare – which gives local young people from disadvantaged backgrounds the chance to aspire to a career in medicine or other healthcare professions.
I get it! Sounds like I’m a bear of some importance…
You are, X-ray Ed! Through you we hope thousands of people will visit our city-centre oasis of a campus at Aston University over the summer and track you down to say hello and take photos of you to share with their friends.
Ooh yes, I like pictures of me – and I’m giving prizes for my favourites. You can enter this Ed-citing competition by posting your photos of me on Facebook “Ed the X-Ray Bear” or Twitter “@EdTheXRayBear”. Make sure you use the hashtag #EdXRayBear. I’m not on Instagram, so just use the hashtag on those photos if you’re posting there.