As a part-time research candidate, Rachel Sharples valued the many opportunities available to her within the Centre for Global Research.
"I graduated with a PhD in 2012. As a research candidate, my PhD was supervised through the Centre for Global Research.
My thesis was on the constructs of culture and identity for displaced persons residing in borderlands spaces. Focusing specifically on a group of Karen who had been displaced from Burma and now living in the Thai-Burma borderlands, I undertook a number of field trips to the Thai-Burma border in order to develop my research. As a student and a researcher, these were important and challenging trips and I benefited from the support of many colleagues at RMIT.
As a part-time student I had been working on my PhD for eight years. During that time I was given many opportunities within the Centre, and found the Global Studies Seminar Series incredibly useful for finding out what sort of research colleagues were working on and for networking both within and outside RMIT. The Centre maintains an excellent intellectual culture where I was able to converse not only with other PhD students but also with academics working in the field. There were important elements of rigour and mentoring that underpin this intellectual culture. It also gave me important links into the teaching program, where I have begun teaching courses, and this added depth and greater understanding to my research."