Ellie Braithwaite (PhD, Psychological Sciences)

In August I was able to attend my first in-person conference in a long time – and what a brilliant conference it turned out to be! The conference was called “Life Beyond the PhD” and was held at the wonderful Cumberland Lodge in Windsor Great Park. It is held annually and brings together PhD students from a huge variety of disciplines, with a real focus on facilitating communication and support between students. I was both looking forward to the conference and a little apprehensive to be amongst other students after such a strange 18 months. The conference turned out to be exactly what I needed, and it was such a refreshing week.

This year’s conference focused on communication, public engagement and interdisciplinary working. Sessions included written and verbal communication, digital engagement and a 1-on-1 CV meeting. A very enjoyable day was spent presenting our research to one another in what was an incredibly supportive and inspiring environment. This was a highlight of the conference for me, and I came away with a renewed motivation for my own work.

Whilst I gained a lot from each organised session at the conference, it was simply spending time amongst like-minded and genuinely inspiring other students that had the greatest impact. It was incredibly rewarding to form new connections with fellow students and we spent time discussing and debating all range of topics. I am so grateful for the opportunity to attend ‘Life Beyond the PhD’ and I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people to experience it with – thanks to all involved.