Candidate for the position of Post Graduate Officer

Image for Sonny Bailey

Sonny Bailey


Hi. I am running to be your next Postgraduate Officer. I am a second year postgraduate research student working on a PhD. I have also been involved with the Union over the two years I have been here, setting up the Disabled Student Association of Stirling (DSAS), and working as the Disabled Student Officer within the Equalities Zone.




Experience – I have a lot of experience within the Union, and as a postgraduate student. This role will help to expand my experience profile towards other areas of work, and I feel that I can bring new ideas to the table.

Passion – I have a passion in wanting to help and support other students, this role would be ideal to support people with a similar outlook to me.

Drive – I have the determination and energy to deliver, as I have done so in my previous experience.




Mental Health – Postgraduate student support and needs differ from undergraduates. As a postgraduate, you are expected to keep a healthy relationship with a supervisor, and to work independently. Mental health problems in postgraduates are attributed to a lack of healthy supervisor relationships, which cause uncertainty and thus, lower engagement in studies.

  • Push for a mentor who specialises in mental health for postgraduate taught and research students. This would be different to the current Mental Health advisors within the Hub.
  • Organise a campaign to raise awareness of postgraduate mental health on campus.
  • Postgraduate Mental Health awareness workshops mid semester to promote the tackling of mental health more often, when people begin to feel the pressure of deadlines.


Outreach – Postgraduate students deliver a high quality of workload, and this work is spread across the community of the discipline they are in. Currently there is a Postgraduate Open Day on campus, however there are a lack of Postgraduate events for current students to disseminate their work. I will:

  • Push for an interdisciplinary Postgraduate event for each semester (around lectures and workshops), which will allow students to present their work within a wider university community, or learn about a particular topic.
  • Organise a Postgraduate Fayre for both taught and research students to equip them with resources and skills needed for this level. This could include workshops and demonstrations around independent study and engagement.


Community – Postgraduate students are likely to experience isolation and loneliness on campus if they do not have a community they feel a part of. Too often, events within the Union do not currently attract postgraduate students, some of whom may only be here for one year. In order to combat this, I have set out the following:

  • Encourage a refreshing break from heavy workloads by organising regular tea/coffee mornings with which postgraduate students can get together.
  • Look into regular social events (in the daytime) for students to meet up and make friends.
  • Explore the idea of a buddying system in which postgraduate taught students buddy up with postgraduate research students to provide support.