Photo by David Ould at Davidould.net
This post is written by one of IAD’s new interns! Amy will be writing weekly posts about her experiences in the department and interesting topics relating to researcher resilience at the university.
During the academic year, I am an undergraduate linguistics student at the University of Edinburgh. However, the Employ.ed on Campus Internship program has given me (and 49 other undergraduates) the opportunity to learn about the inner workings of the University; aspects that students would not usually see.
My internship title is “Researcher Wellbeing Intern” at IAD, so what will this involve? I am going to spend the next 10 weeks investigating what pressures our postdoc research staff are put under and how these pressures influence their resilience and wellbeing. By the end of the internship, we aim to produce a resource for researchers addressing these pressures and offering advice and signposting to people and resources that can help.
This resource will hopefully have a large impact on research staff at the University. After meeting a range of staff, I have begun to realise the amount of pressures that drain resilience. By recognising these pressures and adopting coping methods, I hope that more research staff will be able to enjoy and thrive in their working environments. Another reason for applying for this internship is that I am a prospective postgraduate student, possibly embarking on a research career myself. So this internship will teach me ways to look after myself and support my friends and colleagues when dealing with the pressures of research.
Today is my third day working in IAD and I have already learned a lot. The working environment in IAD is fantastic, I’ve had a very warm welcome and everyone is willing to help wherever they can! I have also learned about a number of services in the university (that I had not heard of before), which are directly aimed at supporting University staff. For example, I was amazed at the amount of help the Research Support Office can provide to researchers applying for funding – anything from deciding which funder best suits the project to reading draft applications to ensure it meets the requirements! I hope that researchers are aware of this massive support system and regularly use it. Using the expertise these services would massively affect resilience and wellbeing because by getting a grant approved first time or getting the best deal from publishers would reduce time spent on admin and allow researchers to actually focus on research!
Thank you to everyone who has helped and talked to me this week! I hope to meet lots more researchers at the university in the next 10 weeks. If you would like to get involved by sharing your thoughts or experiences about resilience please get in touch.