I undertook a four-year BSc (Hons) in Sport and Exercise Science at the University of Bath from 2009-2013. This involved a year-long work placement within a governmental sporting organisation in New Zealand (Harbour Sport) during which I was involved in both research and the provision of sport projects within the local area. Whilst revising for my final exams, I came across an advert for a funded PhD at Brunel within the area that had most interested me throughout my undergraduate studies; sport and health. Since the topic matched my interests perfectly, I thought I had relevant expertise based on my prior education and work placement, and I wished to move to London upon graduating, I applied for the PhD and was delighted to get offered the place. So, following a short work placement within the Physical Activity team at Macmillan Cancer Support, I started my PhD at Brunel in autumn 2013.
Throughout the 2.5 years that I have been at Brunel so far, I have thoroughly enjoyed my experience. In the first year, my supervisors guided me in developing my own ideas for my research, which enabled me to have a clear plan from very early on within my PhD journey.
As part of my bursary conditions, I am required to contribute up to 150 hours of teaching and learning within the division each year. Lecturing, delivering seminars and marking on the undergraduate and Masters level Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences courses has been an extremely valuable experience for me and will certainly enhance my CV when applying for academic roles.
Through the support of my supervisory team, I have also had to opportunity to be involved in a number of external research projects that are relevant to my PhD research. I have a desk within a shared office of PhD students within the Division, and we hold regular “PhD socials”, and so fortunately my PhD experience has not been a lonely one.
I am not yet sure what lies ahead once I finish my PhD at Brunel, but I am confident that studying here will have broadened my opportunities for a career either within or outside academia.