Student Experiences

Dr Piumee Bandara

Position post PhD: Consultant in suicide prevention, World Health Organization

Fulfilling, challenging, and inspiring. The peer network built at THRI, together with the admin support and teaching staff were crucial in getting me through some challenging obstacles. Thank you so much!


Dr Kedir Ahmed

Position post PhD: Research Fellow of Epidemiology, Rural Health Research Institute, Charles Sturt University

My experience at THRI was absolutely incredible. The collaborative and supportive culture at THRI made me to learn an immense amount during my PhD study there. It was an unforgettable experience that I will always cherish.


Dr Mansi Dhami

Position post PhD: Paediatric Senior Resident Medical Officer, Sydney Children’s Hospital Network: The Children's Hospital at Westmead

I have been very supported throughout my journey at THRI. I have had great mentors to guide me throughout my journey. I also had some amazing support from all other staff members and it was beautiful journey overall.


Dr Sithum Munasinghe

Position post PhD: Associate research fellow- health data analytics, THRI

I have really very good memories during my time as a student at THRI. From the first day I joined THRI as a student, I felt that I was not far from my home and family. During my tenure, I greatly improved my research skills, interpersonal and leadership skills, and the support, in all forms, I had from all THRI staff members and students was incredible. Those fond memories will stay with me forever.


Dr Lalitha Rajagopal

Position post PhD: Teaching

When I migrated to Sydney from Singapore, my supervisors were my first point of contact. I received a lot of support as a PhD student from my supervisors. I am thankful to them for making my dreams come true. My supervisors were patient with me and slowly moulded me into a fine researcher. I learnt a lot from my supervisors and I still do. In particular, my primary supervisor, A/P Kate McBride, ensured that I was well supported emotionally throughout my studies. She would check on me via emails, phone calls or even simple SMS to make sure I was managing my challenging PhD journey well. She continue to support my dreams post PhD. THRI provided me a number of resources to ensure I was well supported as a PhD student. This included regular meetings and providing opportunities to participate in conferences locally and interstate. I made a lot of friends in THRI. As friends, we were able to support each other and assist one another if need arises. Overall, my experience as a THRI student was an enriching experience and I thank THRI for the support rendered to me to help me realise my dream.


Dr Moin Uddin Ahmed

Position post PhD: Health Economist, Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney

The support I received from the THRI has been instrumental in ensuring the success of my PhD study. THRI’s generous support has enabled me to access important resources and opportunities that have enriched my research experience and helped me to achieve my research goals. I am deeply grateful to THRI for its holistic approach to supporting research and researchers and its dedication to fostering a healthy and supportive research environment.


Dr Tensae Mekonnen

Position post PhD: Research Technical Officer, Western Sydney Local health district Blacktown Hospital Metabolic and Weight Loss Program

I had a positive student experience at THRI. I learned systematic review and quantitative data analysis skills. I also received good quality supervision and support, which helped me to publish four journal articles from my PhD research project.



Dr Dorothy Ndwiga

Completing my PhD has been one of the most challenging and yet the most rewarding thing I have ever done. I have enjoyed my PhD journey and I am incredibly proud of my achievement. I would not have completed my thesis without the expertise and enthusiastic support of my amazing supervisors (Dr Freya MacMillan, Dr Kate McBride and Distinguished Professor David Simmons), who have been so thoughtful, kind and patient all the way. I am also indebted to all staff members at THRI for their support during my candidature and for treating me as one of their own. Their support has been incredible and I appreciate them for creating a friendly environment where we (PhD students) could conduct our research and learn from each other.

I have enjoyed my time at THRI greatly, from the research meetings and workshops organised by Dr Elizabeth Conroy to the friendships I have made with my fellow PhD comrades, who have been so supportive and made this journey so much more interesting. Thank you all for making my candidature memorable.

My PhD focused on tackling the burden of diabetes in the Australian Samoan community through promoting healthy lifestyle choices. I have learnt, grown and developed new insights into the Australia health care services and diabetes over the past three years. I am now looking forward to building my expertise and collaborations and continue my research around diabetes. I will continue to work at Western as a Tutor/Lecturer in School of Health Sciences and School of Medicine.