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24th November 2023 Tin Tin Naing (2015, DPhil Earth Sciences)

Exeter welcomes CARA postdoctoral fellow Dr Tin Tin Naing

This year, Tin Tin Naing (2015, DPhil Earth Sciences) began as a postdoctoral fellow at Exeter after graduating from the College in 2020. Her work is supported by the Council for At-Risk Academics (CARA), which helps academics at immediate risk in their home countries, and a by a donation from Marcia Delves-Broughton, widow of Revd Simon Delves-Broughton (1953, Theology). Like Tin Tin, Marcia is from Myanmar, and she felt moved to help Tin Tin during her time in Oxford.

I completed a DPhil in Earth Sciences (Natural Environment Research Council Centre for Doctoral Training [NERC CDT]) at Exeter College from 2015 to 2020. Reading for a doctorate is one of the hardest things I have ever done. I have had many supportive supervisors and colleagues who have encouraged me when other aspects of life might have halted my research. I could not do it alone without their support.

Exeter taught me the value of hard work, determination, self-belief, and problem-solving. I found the Exeter community to be friendly and warm, with an impeccable knack of making international students feel right at home. Exeter organises many social activities throughout the year, including punting and other sports, garden parties, formal dinners, and the annual College ball. For someone who had just moved thousands of miles away from home, there was never a dull moment. Everyone at Exeter is keen to help anyone who needs it. College life is more wonderful than I could have imagined. At Exeter, the mixture of students from different background, cultures, and religions all come together to form the most wonderful community.

In 2023, I was awarded a CARA Fellowship (the Council for At-Risk Academics) to begin my academic career as a Postdoctoral Fellow at Oxford. Exeter College and the Department of Earth Sciences partnered with the Council for At-Risk Academics so that I could continue academic life. Thanks to their support, I can dedicate myself to research, teaching, and wider academic opportunities. I am very happy to be part of Exeter College’s community as an associate member of Exeter’s Senior Common Room. I have the great opportunity to live in College accommodation again and I have the best time with everyone there.

Oxford academic commitments remain as challenging as ever. My Oxford experience was quirky, occasionally surreal, and very tough at times. Nonetheless, it has opened my eyes to different ways of being and helped shape me as a person. I learned how to speak with people of different backgrounds and debate ideas respectfully within a group.

Finally, I would like to reiterate my thanks to CARA, my College, and my department for their generosity and support. Exeter has inspired me to use my own skills and resources to support the next generation of Oxford scholars.

Tin Tin Nainge

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