Ayesha Ali

Country of origin: United States

Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Tennessee Health Science Center

I chose to pursue my PhD studies at Lancaster University Management School because I had the opportunity to speak with both of my PhD supervisors, Prof. Bruce Hollingsworth from the Division of Health Research and Prof. Colin Green from Economics, before enrolling and felt that they were very approachable and supportive, and that both of them offered different insights and were experts in their respective areas of research. After speaking with them, I recognised that study at Lancaster would be a unique opportunity for me to pursue my career goals.

I found that the small cohort sizes on the PhD Economics programme meant a friendly and supportive environment among other graduate students as well as more interaction with faculty members. Other faculty members in the department have been very friendly and provided a lot of encouragement, advice, and feedback on research, conference presentations, and teaching that I have found to be very helpful both as a student and after leaving Lancaster. Additionally, the weekly departmental seminars and the annual NWDTC PhD conferences have been invaluable in preparing me for the job market.

I really enjoyed teaching at Lancaster; the undergraduate students are friendly and respectful and thoroughly enjoy being at University. This makes teaching a very rewarding experience and a nice break from research. Teaching gave me another opportunity to connect with other PhD students who were also teaching as well as an opportunity to evaluate and improve my own research and presentation skills

My favourite thing about living in Lancaster was the laid back pace of life on campus. Because the University is located just outside of the town of Lancaster, the environment is quiet, calm, and ideal for studying and relaxing. I really enjoyed all of the beautiful places to ride a bike, run, and walk in the surrounding countryside. I also enjoyed the facilities at the Sports Centre and volunteering with the Green Lancaster student organisation on campus. There is always something interesting to do on campus and people are very friendly and inviting. I’ve made friends from all around the world at Lancaster.

Following completion of my PhD, I accepted a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in the department of Preventive Medicine where I continue my research on health behaviors and disparities.