Peer support is central to improving PhD student mental health

Editor’s note: We are delighted to have a guest post from Dr. Sarah Masefield (@scmasefield) at the University of York, U.K. Sarah is founder of the Thrive and Survive in your PhD project. She is currently a research fellow at the Interdisciplinary Global Development Centre at the University of York and a registered occupational therapist. Doing a PhD is not supposed to be easy, but alongside the academic challenges, there seems to be a culture…

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Aligning your brand and culture within your team

I appreciate that the concepts of culture and brand will be new to many academic investigators. We rarely tackle these topics in our training, and most of us may not even understand the meaning of these words. In the first two posts of this series we defined what brand and culture are, and why they’re important in science. We also discussed how to identify whether your culture and brand are mismatched: See Part 1 here:  The…

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Monitoring your information diet

We have an information banquet at our finger tips.  It’s a feast for the eyes and the ears; a smorgasbord of colour, content and a constant (sometimes annoying) presence in our lives.  Information has become the new flavourful, colourful commodity that dominates our lives and it’s shared on a fast-moving and highly-connected supply chain. Here are some statistical ‘appetizers’ for you: 3.5 Billion people use social media every dayFacebook is the most widely used platform…

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Will 2021 be the year for improving mental health in academia?

Alongside exposing numerous systemic weaknesses in scientific and medical infrastructure, 2020 has also been guilty of exposing some deep-seated issues in the state of academic mental health. People that regularly operate on the thinnest of margins with respect to time-management have had to overhaul their teaching delivery, take on part-time or full-time caring responsibilities, isolate themselves from their peer support network, and generally push themselves an extra little bit to make 2020 work. Cracks emerged,…

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