Dear Postgraduate Students,
As my term comes to an end, I am signing off as your Postgraduate Officer.
I want to take this opportunity to recognize some of our outstanding peers who have gone above and beyond to support our community. Ed, Sarah, Mohit, Madhvi, Pearce, Stephanie, Rahul, Kerry, Jasmine, Georgios, Sami, Tobenna, Hany, Megs, Matthew, Matt, Alex, Ravi, Bea, and so many others – thank you. I moved to Belfast from NYC two years ago, and my time at Queen’s just wouldn’t have been the same without you.
From Corrie chats, event planning meetups, and coffee catch-ups at The Graduate School, this year is one I will most certainly not forget anytime soon.
I am immensely proud of our postgraduate community and the vast amount of knowledge and passion our postgraduates bring to Queen’s and the wider community. One of the best perks of being Postgraduate Officer is the access I have to student projects across campus: I had the privilege of visiting many of your Schools and Centres this year and I remain awed by the incredible amount of impactful projects you are all leading both on and off campus.
Here’s just some of the work I have achieved this year as your Postgraduate Officer with your support:
Lobbying and Representation
- Successfully represented the Students’ Union as principal student lead on the Education Skills & Strategy Working Group
- Delivered the first in-person Academic Boards since COVID-19
- Represented the Students’ Union as Race Equity Champion on the REC Network
- Demanded inclusive language and activities that address the unique needs of postgraduate students in the Students’ Union and Schools
- Successfully lobbied the University to extend the fee-free period for select PGRs
- Effectively directed postgrads to various funding opportunities, such as the Postgraduate Led Initiatives Fund, Students’ Union funds, School discretionary funds and local partnerships
- Effectively lobbied the University for investments in postgraduate student experience and community building and wellbeing initiatives
- Secured funding for tangible resources for postgraduates, such as presenting tools, wellbeing and social games, picnic blankets for outdoor community building, and ring lights, supported by the Queen’s Annual Fund
- Initiated discussions with university leaders regarding the Code of Practice between the Students’ Union and Schools related to academic representation
- Successfully championed pragmatic solutions to support our one-year master’s students
- Represented students on the University Working Group examining how to re-design degrees and certificate programmes for the future
- Advocated for enhanced digital learning and lecture capture as a matter of equity and inclusion
- Contributed to the Assessment Support Framework, which will see the introduction to dynamic exceptional circumstances forms and a data-driven system that moves the university forward and makes an administrative task more student friendly and less time-intrusive
- In partnership with the Student Officer Equality & Diversity, worked with Accommodation to deliver on a student housing guarantor scheme, expected to roll-out in 2023
- Partnered with the African Scholars Research Network @ QUB to lead our Black History Month event
- Produced dRAG Night at Mandela Hall, raising over £1,000 for charity with QUB RAG
- Organized the Postgraduate Picnic on the Lanyon Lawn
- Hosted daily and monthly postgraduate community and support events
- Delivered 3 headshot photo day sessions for postgraduates across the Queen’s community
- Co-faciliated student-led race equity listening sessions
- Co-organised Cost-of-Living events with The Graduate School
- Co-founded PLUS+, the LGBTQ+ Postgraduate and Postdoc Group
- Supported the USI Postgraduate community as a member of the Postgraduate Working Group
- Engaged with peers and colleagues across campus, including Queen’s Accommodation, Research & Enterprise, and community partners
I am transitioning to PhD studies and look forward to seeing you across campus. Don’t hesitate to drop me a note anytime and keep in touch – I’m always happy to lend a hand or make a new friend.
Your incoming Postgraduate Officer, Kieran, will take excellent care of our community next year. I wish him all the best.