Thia Dickey

Thia Dickey - PGR Student

Why did you decide to study at the School of Psychology?

I was first impressed with the passion and knowledge of the staff members I met, particularly in the Centre for Identity and Intergroup Relations, where my own research interests lie.  As a PhD student, my first impressions of the School highlighted for me the quality of postgraduate students that the School attracts.  At the School I have found academic staff who are supportive of my research interests, and who willingly take time to provide guidance and feedback when I seek them out.  It is clear to me that my supervisors and other staff members desire to see their students grow in knowledge and expertise in their fields, by encouraging creativity and independence and by challenging us to think critically.

What have you enjoyed most about your course so far?

I feel privileged to be able to do what I love – to spend the day engrossed in the study of a topic of my choice, to be faced with frequent challenges and to be encouraged to find solutions to the problems that arise form those challenges.

I also love the working environment I am in.  I believe the School of Psychology is unique in this respect.  Working in an open plan office with other PhD students has provided the opportunity for learning in a supportive environment.  As students we share the burden of challenges faced by PhD students, and engage in lively lunchtime discussions that often involve sharing about our research projects.  This experience has definitely contributed to my positive experience at the School and to my development as a postgraduate student.

What do you do in your spare time?  Are you a member of any clubs or societies?

My colleague and I jointly coordinate a Social Issues Journal Club in the School, which is open to anyone interested in research within the fields of psychology, politics, conflict, sociology and education.  I am also a member of an experimental journal club run by a staff member in the School.  Aside from that I am a student/graduate member of the International Society for Political Psychology, the British Psychological Society and the European Association of Social Psychology.

How will your study help you gain employment after university?  What are your career aspirations?

My career aspirations are to remain in academia, and I believe that the experiences an training I have received at the School will contribute towards achieving the goal of eventually finding employment within the academic setting.