Muataz Lafta is Uppsala Student of the Year 2021

Muataz Lafta, a medical student, has been chosen as the Uppsala Student of the Year 2021.

Muataz Lafta, a medical student, has been chosen as the Uppsala Student of the Year 2021.

Lafta, the latest Uppsala Student of the Year, is in his ninth semester of the Medicine Programme. He has a keen interest in the brain and has already begun his PhD. He has also founded several student associations and used various channels to inform young people about health and narcotic drugs.

Muataz Lafta, aged 23, comes from Eskilstuna and has long been interested in research. He is now combining his medical education with the Early Doctorate at Uppsala University (EDUU) research programme, pursuing his PhD studies in neuroscience part-time. In the future, he would like to work in neurosurgery

The Uppsala Student of the Year award is presented by the Anders Wall Foundation. According to the Foundation’s statutes, students eligible are those who have developed entrepreneurship connected with their education or distinguished themselves for positive, creative contributions at the University, participated in a student union and/or a student nation’s activities, or made particular efforts to support other students. The award includes a scholarship of SEK 125,000.


“During his education, Muataz has been particularly interested in surgery. This prompted him, in 2019, to found the surgery students’ association in Uppsala, to promote interest in the speciality and make it easier for students to get acquainted with surgical work. Through his involvement as a member of the national Swedish Surgical Society for Medical Students, he has also been able to establish collaborative projects with other surgery students’ associations.

In 2021, to offer support for students engaged in research and boost collaboration among students attending different study programmes, Muataz started an association for research students in Uppsala that serves as a platform for students on the Medicine, Biomedicine and Pharmacy Programmes.

Issues relating to health promotion, too, drive and interest Muataz. Through the Choice Foundation, he has visited elementary and upper secondary schools to speak about young people's health and the risks of alcohol, narcotic drugs and tobacco. He has also been involved as a communicator in both the parents’ association against drugs in Uppsala and the association of Swedes and immigrants against drugs in Stockholm.”

Presentation in March

The scholarship is usually presented on the occasion of the annual Anders Wall Entrepreneurship Lecture, but since the lecture due in autumn 2021 was cancelled, the presentation will be made at the Foundation’s digital scholarship ceremony on 10 March 2022 instead. Muataz Lafta will also become a member of the Wallumni network, comprising former Anders Wall Fellows in scientific research, entrepreneurship, rural development and music.

Linda Koffmar

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