PhD Networking event - Workspace

The Imperial College London, Department of Medicine networking event
Hosted by the Division of Infectious Diseases
Evening of Friday 17 October 2014
Virology Library St Mary’s Medical School
As an introductory event we had a beer and pizza based networking event at St Mary’s campus for
the PhD students in the department of medicine, many of the sections were represented including
molecular virology, mucosal infection and immunity, paediatrics, infectious diseases epidemiology
and surgery. The event was set up by Dr John Tregoning (campus cohort representative) and
Ekaterina Kinnear and Simren Gill (PhD representatives). The aim of the event was to encourage
interactions between PhD students at the St Mary’s campus. Due to the nature of the St Mary’s
campus, students can feel isolated, particularly in groups where there are only one or two students.
This is exacerbated by the lack of a central café/ tea room on campus and the restrictions in access
between the different sections in the building. An opportunity to strengthen bonds and create
networks between students was welcomed to both improve the research environment and enable
students to troubleshoot their research with each other.
The event was a huge success, with instant feedback suggesting that the students attending the
event felt it was a very constructive forum for them to discuss their issues and a lot of comments
along the lines of: ‘Oh I see you all the time but didn’t know who you were’. We were also very lucky
to be supported by Dr Laki Buluwela (Lead for Doctoral Degrees, Faculty of Medicine) and Mike
Asavarut, Student AWO for FoM. A survey ( has been
circulated with positive feedback suggesting that quarterly events would be of value and that: “More
events and an area to socialise More social events, Organizing more events for networking between
PhDs, more interaction with people” would all be of value. We are grateful to the Cohort Building
Support Programme for supporting this event and will definitely do more events in the future.