Louise Courtney will today (Friday 14 December) celebrate as she graduates with a Master’s (MA) in Social Anthropology from the School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics at Queen’s University Belfast.
Louise started her journey to Queen’s a decade ago when she completed an Access Course in humanities at Belfast Metropolitan College. She went on to complete her undergraduate degree in History and Social Anthropology at Queen's, and has now completed her Master’s degree.
Speaking about her university experience, Louise said: “I am the first of my family to attend university, so the experience has been a little daunting at times.
“I had my two girls while studying. My daughter Edith, 5, was born during the first year of my undergraduate degree and Bryony (20 months) was born during my Master’s.
“At times I found it very challenging working part-time while studying and juggling family life. However, the support and encouragement that I have received from staff at Queen’s has been fantastic. Studying at Queen's has allowed me to combine work, education and a growing family.”
It will also be double celebration for Louise as the day before her graduation ceremony she will mark a special birthday as she turns 30. “I am looking forward to enjoying my graduation day and also celebrating my birthday. Graduating from Queen’s definitely marks the end of an era, but I am really looking forward to seeing what the future holds.”
After graduation, Louise hopes to return to Queen’s for further study.
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