Tomorrow is the official start of my PhD programme, so this week I have spent days and hours browsing the university’s website, trying to get some overview and structure.
- I’ve set up my university email account and subscribed to various mailing lists.
- I’ve scheduled a first meeting with my supervisors for next week.
- I’ve connected the Orcid account I registered when submitting to my first journal a month ago (still “under review”) to the university library.
- I found a mandatory course called Research integrity, which I’m taking online and am halfway through. It’s really interesting and important. I’m learning things that I think should be part of the basic education for all postgraduate students at all universities.
- I’ve signed up for various seminars, mainly in October 2021.
My thoughts before I begin
I’m very confused. I don’t know what it will mean to be a PhD student. Should I sign up for courses? Where do I find them? What are the “training programmes” that it’s my responsibility to attend? Or will it from day one only be about reading a lot and doing my own research? These are the questions I need to ask my supervisors, and maybe the separately assigned advisor, which I guess I will be informed about.
Note: There will also be induction events next week. So things will get clearer. But I wanted to record my honest feelings at the moment.
On Tuesday I had Indonesian dinner at Mabuhay with M&B, and my friend O.
On Wednesday I visited my classmate and friend A and had my first yoga/breathing exercise/mantra chanting. And then we talked. Walked home, 7 km, just before the rain started pouring down.
On Thursday night I had a walk and dinner at Paolo Pinkel with A: We had delicious Bibimbap from their Korean kitchen (they have three kitchens, so we’re coming back). And then we also talked.
On Thursday and Friday I participated as a listener, and quite selectively, in the Enqa workshop 2021.
On Saturday I had my first insect burger with friends and neighbours at H/O’s place. Not too bad! I guess I’m now an ento-vegetarian. Earlier in the day I spontaneously ran a bit in the park where I usually walk:
And today I had a walk in the same park with my friend A. It was 16 degrees and chilly – I need to dress warmer when I’m not alone and can adjust the temperature by my walking pace.
In the mornings I watch Japanese news – it’s exciting now with the candidature to LDP leader – and in the evenings I’m watching Macross: Tonight will be episode 9. I like it very much.
PhD and university related
My Manchester News:
- What you really need to know as you prepare to start your PhD
- How campus is operating; a guide for PGR students
- Starting a PhD – what is it really like?
SALC Academic Advising Community:
- Making the most of now and planning for the future
SALC PGR Handbook
- Daniel Skentelbery: ‘I Feel Twenty Years Younger’: Age-Bending cosplay. (2019) – tip from my supervisor. Very interesting aspect of cosplay, which has relevance for my own research. I also found some new references.
ENQA Workshop 2021: Futures beyond Crises
16–17 September 2021.
Nothing of direct relevance to me but I like Enqa and it’s interesting to hear about various queer research projects. Although Zoom presentations are very hard for me to follow, as noted earlier. One block per day will have to suffice.
- Keynote address: Omar Kasmani (Freie Universität Berlin)
- Panel: Crises, refusals and insurgencies chaired by Tunay Altay
- Suparna Roy: Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation: A Reflection on Indian Politics for a Future ‘Beyond Crisis’
- Maya El Helou: In the verge of something, anything, Maybe nothing and maybe life or the lack of thereof: Queer and Feminist insurgencies in Urban Beirut
- A. Berkem Yanıkcan: Queering the Administration Crisis at Boğaziçi University: Sexual Politics and the Public University in Turkey
- Manuel Bolz: Queering Revenge: Medicalization and psychologization of emotions and affects of crisis
- Spotlight East Asia @ Sheffield: Emailing Japanese organisations: four pieces of fieldwork advice for PhD and early-career researchers (very useful fieldwork tips!)
- Ali Abdaal: The Feynman Technique (study/memorisation)
- The Economist: Sweden is being shot up (24 July 2021)
Today I summarised my impressions of my favourite Japanese study book 真日本語 500問 N2.
Let the new adventure begin!