Take your rightful place.

Sana's story

Current employment
I am a lecturer in Political Theory and Research Methods in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne.

Why did you choose to study at the University of Melbourne?
Melbourne Uni offered the most generous scholarship for my undergraduate studies, which made it possible to leave home for study.

What did you like about studying at Melbourne?
The people. I have been taught by, studied alongside and now teach people who are far more interesting and smarter than I'll ever be. It's exhausting. It's exciting. And, it's humbling.

How did your studies help you attain your current role, or progress in your career?
It was pretty clear early on that my heart wasn’t in legal practice, and despite some bumpy early years I really came to love the research process. There aren’t many opportunities you get to spend three (or four!) years researching a single topic of your own choosing for your own reasons, so despite the vow of poverty a PhD entails, I loved (almost) every minute of it. I was also really surprised to find how much I enjoyed teaching, which has made me more determined to pursue an academic career.

What would you say to prospective students considering studying at the University of Melbourne?
Bring all your hopes and aspirations with you when you come – but leave the hopes and aspirations of all those around you behind. You don’t have to prove anything to anyone but yourself.

What made you decide to undertake your graduate study at the University of Melbourne?
I couldn’t leave this city! I love Melbourne, it’s a wonderfully cosmopolitan city and I find it pleasingly different from everywhere else in Australia. I think I’ve experienced the best and worst of uni, and what I’ve learned is that you just have to keep your head down and bum up. Just do the work, and don’t get distracted by the rest. There are plenty of support services around, but the best have been my fellow students, supportive teachers and good mentors.

Did you receive any scholarships?
Melbourne National Scholarship (2001–2004), all HECS paid plus $10k per annum for four years.
Oodgeroo Scholarship from Trinity College (2001–2005), all accommodation costs paid.
Australian Postgraduate Award (2009–2011).
PhD stipend (approximately $20k per annum, for three years).