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'Postgraduates are at the heart of everything we do'

Joe Stanley
President of the Students’ Union Postgraduate Society

Postgraduate study is very different to undergraduate study, and it’s important to have people around you who are as passionate about their research as you are.

At Sheffield Hallam, we have a thriving community of 6,400 postgraduate students – and it’s at the heart of everything we do.

As president of the Postgraduate Society, I want new students to feel welcomed, informed, but most importantly excited about starting their postgraduate degrees at Sheffield Hallam.

Starting another qualification is daunting, and having a strong and vibrant community around you is important if you want to get the most out of what you are studying. There’s no need to go it alone!

My advice is to get involved. Join Facebook or WhatsApp groups to find out what’s going on in your department. Ask your supervisors and tutors about opportunities to present your work at conferences.

I’m biased, but I’d strongly encourage new students to join the Postgraduate Society too. It’s free, and there’s something for everyone – we put on a range of events to suit all interests, from walks in the Peak District to trips to nearby cities. We are open to everyone, and it’s a fantastic way to make friends and build a network of like-minded people.

As I approach the completion of my history PhD and reflect on my time at Sheffield Hallam, I’m grateful for the opportunities available to me and my fellow postgraduates here. We come from a range of backgrounds and all have different motivations – but what unites us is that we all had a great time studying for our degrees.

Joe Stanley is a third year PhD history student. His PhD thesis is entitled The Yorkshire Miners 1786-1839: A Study in Work, Culture and Protest.

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