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Reflecting on 'This PhD Life'

This PhD Life is not your typical academic conference! A one-day event hosted by UofG twice every year, This PhD Life is cross-disciplinary day of talks and panels aimed at researchers near the start of their PhDs. What makes This PhD Life unique is that all the presentations are related to the PhD experience, not to academic knowledge. Topics in past conferences have included wellbeing, productivity, supervisory relationships, writing and more. The presenters are all 2nd, 3rd or 4th+ Year PhDs and Early Career Researchers; people who can give great advice because they themselves were recently starting their own PhD journeys.

I’ve had the absolute pleasure of being involved with all three occurrences of This PhD Life to date - predominately in a behind-the-scenes role as technical and social media support! However after seeing the impact of the talks the first time I took part, I felt inspired to put together my own presentations for the January 2021 and October 2021 conferences. It has been so exciting to see the conference go from strength to strength, with the October 2021 conference attracting over 170 attendees and with 15 incredible speakers. This PhD Life is always really fun to present at, thanks to its friendly, lively atmosphere and open discussion- so if you’re considering a presentation in January 2022 I encourage you to go for it!

My favourite thing about the event is that all the presenters are working towards a common goal: to make sure that the attendees leave equipped with the tools to make their PhD experience a positive one. This is common practice amongst 2nd year+ PhDs within research groups and schools, but to see this vision enacted on a much larger scale is a really positive reflection on the PhD community here at UofG.

It’s a common trope that a PhD is an isolating experience, but This PhD Life proves that you are never alone in your research because you will always have the support of your peers. The benefits of taking part are universal: attendees leave with a wealth of information to help support them on their PhD journey; and presenters leave knowing that they have contributed to the continuing development of the PhD community at UofG.

You can view all the presentations from This PhD Life October 2021 below.

This blog post was originally published on the UofG PGR Blog. You can read the original here.

Header photo from University of Glasgow.

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