Mary received her BA in Development Studies from Richmond, the American International University in London. She joined the PROWIBO team as an intern in the summer of 2018. Throughout her life, Mary has believed that accessing education and learning opportunities is a fundamental human right. As ThinkTank Projects Manager, Mary develops programs to advance the organisation’s mission of sharing learning on education and development. Since the autumn of 2019, Mary started pursuing her MSc in Global Health at the University of Glasgow.
How do you find the ThinkTank’s growth over the past year?
I am very pleased about the growth of ThinkTank Without Borders. This year we launched our book review page, which I believe is a great addition to the publication database. Our contributors have produced phenomenal reports covering a diverse range of literature from authors around the globe. Moreover, this year was an exciting year for our conferences. We hosted two conferences in 2019 including our first student-led conference and our first conference in Asia. We were also able to produce a report for each conference to document the key findings from our panels and our policy recommendations. It has been an amazing experience to witness the ThinkTank expand the reach of PROWIBO across generations and around the globe.
How do you plan to develop and expand the ThinkTank in 2020?
In 2020 we are looking to grow our list of publications and our network of contributors. ThinkTank Without Borders at its core is about knowledge exchange; therefore, in 2020 we want to ensure that our publication database reflects the globalising force that is higher education. It is our aim to continue to recruit contributors across institutions to cultivate a diverse range of perspectives. We will continue to expand our publication library in terms of research papers and book reviews additionally, we are excited to continue to develop and host innovative conferences that facilitate knowledge exchange on a larger scale.
As a postgraduate student, how do you manage between your work and studies?
It has definitely been a challenge balancing my workloads since starting my MSc. Above all, I try to separate my academic and professional work into manageable and equitable allocations throughout the week. It helps me prioritise my tasks and ensure that I am able to stay on track with short and medium-term deadlines. Moreover, I have an amazing team to support me! My PROWIBO colleagues are always willing to assist me and I am so grateful for the support.
What tips would you offer new graduates entering the job market?
I would say firstly it’s important to explore all of your career options as early as possible. It could be very helpful to develop an action plan, where you can map out your short and long term goals as well as develop a timetable for submitting job applications and developing new soft skills. I would also recommend speaking to individuals in your interested career area. This can be an opportunity to ask questions about the career development process. Finally, I think it is critical to find out information about professional support networks, trade unions, and other workplace organisations that can support you in your career as early as possible.
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