Meet the Natives: Saja Al-Nahi, Higher Education Researcher
With over four years experience, Saja Al-Nahi is the latest Native to join this department. Working alongside Holly Cartlidge, who’s currently on maternity leave, Saja has certainly got her teeth into Net Natives life. I caught up with her to find out a little bit more about the role:
Hi Saja how are you finding Net Natives so far?
The people here are really friendly and are actually funny too; I have had some genuine, non-awkwardly forced work laughs since becoming a Native.
What does a typical day at Net Natives look like for you?
What’s great about this role is the range of the daily activities. No day is the same, and I prefer it that way. I could be working on a country profile outlining education trends and policies in Malaysia, and the next day I might be working on structuring a new research project, or producing strategic insights using sector specific data and knowledge. I love how engaged and data minded everyone is at Net Natives. You can tell everyone truly cares about the work.
The only day that is pretty consistent is Friday morning when I put together all the interesting policy insights I have been reading throughout the week into an update.
Why do you think Net Natives is a special place?
Everyone is really open to data-driven approaches. I like that I have a lot of independence as a Higher Education Researcher. Also, we get a lot of cake and fruit. The coffee is surprisingly great too.
Tell us a bit about your background and what brought you to Net Natives?
I am an American. I came to Net Natives after moving to the United Kingdom. In the States I completed a MA in Political Science and worked in the development field as a researcher. I specialised as a Data and Policy Analyst for two years in New York prior to joining Natives; my emphasis was on education in the Middle East and North Africa.
What are you looking forward to achieving at Net Natives?
I want to fully utilise all the cool sources of data to inform insights on education trends.
Tell us something that no one would guess about you…
I am obsessed with Always Sunny in Philadelphia (the TV show). I find it absolutely hilarious and people always find that surprising because my personal sense of humour is more of the ‘awkward dad joke’ style.
What do you get up to outside of work?
I enjoy reading about politics and probability. I like to paint and have become a bit of a calligraphy enthusiast. I love doing acrylic pieces based on my favorite poetry. My current obsession is researching cryptocurrency.
Is there an education based publication which really grabs your attention?
I check Wonkhe.com and HEPI (Higher Education Policy Institution) every morning for updates on how politics and policy is impacting the sector.
If you could describe yourself in three words, what would those words be?
Analytical, Self-Aware, Sarcastic
For all the latest developments in the Higher Education sector, then be sure to check Saja’s weekly updates.