Education (Research) Officer Nominee:

As an international PhD student, I am aware first-hand of the stress, precarity, and isolation that Graduate Researchers(GRs) face at UniMelb. If elected, I will focus on three areas to better student experience:

1) I will advocate for more need-based grants and a commensurate increase in stipends.

While graduate stipends have been indexed by the University, the rate of indexation is not commensurate with increased costs of rent and living in a city like Melbourne. Apart from my own experiences, I have heard many instances of GR students having to supplement their income with part-time and casual work that does nothing to add to either research or well-being.

2) I will advocate for subsidized food outlets that provide healthy and affordable meals to students on campus.

The absence of nutritious and affordable food options on campus—alongside increasing food inflation in Melbourne, poses the most significant challenge to GR health and well-being. This is unlike many other well-ranked international universities, where subsidized meals are provided by the University.

3) I will work to institute relevant information and support mechanisms at UniMelb to help PhD students find academic jobs. This would include an academic job board and professional application support services.