Blog & Updates

November 15, 2022

Our experiences after a year of SURREAL - Mugdha (ESR 15)

12 months ago, many of our Early Stage Researchers joined the SURREAL project and we are eager to share their most important experiences to date.

Every week, an ESR will provide a mini update by answering the 4 questions below. Hopefully, this will give you some insight into their most important first year experiences.

12 months on…:

  • What is the most interesting thing you’ve learnt?
  • The hardest task you have come across?
  • The most fun experience within SURREAL?
  • How has your research impacted your daily life?

This week, Mugdha will tell us about her experiences over the last year:

Where: University of Luxembourg, Department of Geography and Spatial Planning
When: Started in October 2021

What is the most interesting thing you have learnt?

"There are so many things to learn. From the people as well as the nature around you. But for me this is the first time I am miles away from my family and its not easy to just decide to go home. I think one of the most important lessons has been to be happy with my own company. The PhD life can get quite lonely and I think moving away from your usual life teaches you to be comfortable with your own self. I have done things I never thought I would do like fixing things around the house and just generally nourishing myself and taking responsibility completely."

Just a sucker for sunsets and here are a few of the most beautiful ones in Luxemburg!

The hardest task you have come across?

"I wouldn't say the hardest but to be able to write! I think it's a skill and it's not as easy as it looks. You really need to develop the habit. There are so many things that can be distracting and procrastination wins the bet when coupled with some food, netflix and alcohol."

The most fun experience within SURREAL?

"Having the other three ESRs around in Luxembourg is such a good feeling. We catch up regularly and it's always nice to have a little chat! And I would say the Network School! It has been the most fun with everybody together! It was such a great opportunity to get to know everyone in person and share a little bit of our cultures with each other."

How has your research impacted your daily life?

"I think for me my research journey has been the one where I see myself slowly becoming friends with Luxembourg! My research started with my reflections on this massive change I experienced coming from a big country like India and as I have moved forward I have started to reflect upon the tiny little details around me and that has blossomed into a nice friendship with this country. 

I think I am starting to discover a lot about the world as well as about people through my research and I quite like the journey so far!"

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