Universiti Malaya – Wales

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I address social problems like inequality in my research to help draw attention to such concerning issues

Alireza Azeri Matin
Graduate, Doctor of Philosophy (Professional Communication)

My postgraduate journey

After getting my Bachelor’s degree in hospitality management I began working in the tourism industry, but it did not take me long to realize that I could do better with my life by continuing my education. That was because I always believed that it is through education that one can improve his or her life and also bring changes to other people’s lives.

How I chose my programme and IUMW

I was always fascinated with people, how they interact with each other, or how they use media to enrich their lives, so I decided to pursue my postgraduate education in Communication studies. But choosing the right place to spend a few years of my life learning and doing research seemed to be a challenge, until I googled the universities which would match the criteria that I was looking for, such as the right course, reasonable fees, culturally diverse environment and most importantly the location. A long story short, I saw myself enrolled on a Master’s degree, and then on to a PhD in Professional Communication at IUMW.

Research I’m currently pursuing

I recently graduated, and am currently doing research in media studies. This is the field that right now I am most interested in since I have truly come to realize the significant role of the media in shaping the way people perceive themselves and the world around them. I always choose the topics for research with one primary question in my mind; how will my research benefit others? That is perhaps why I have always tried to address persistent social problems such as inequality in my writings with the hope that I can draw attention to such important and concerning issues.

Choosing my supervisor

I personally believe that the most important criterion to look for in a supervisor is moral support since the post-grad journey is full of highs and lows and students need someone to bolster their courage and determination. I had different supervisors in the past, but the most needed help came from the last one who went all the way to ensure I overcome the mental pressure I was facing in the last phase of my studies.

Postgraduate studies and my career

Initially, I did not think of furthering my education after I received my Bachelor’s degree, which seemed to be good enough to secure a job in the tourism and hospitality industry. However, after working for some time and re-thinking my true aspirations which transcended the immediate service provided to the public at the individual level, I decided to embark on a bigger journey with bigger hopes. Looking back, I think of the gap between my degree and post-grad journey as an invaluable experience and an opportunity to look at my life from a different perspective. The time spent working, provided it is not too long, is the time for re-evaluating ourselves in terms of what we want to achieve in life and who we want to become in the future. However, everyone’s circumstances vary and some might be enlightened enough to leave no gap between their studies and go for the supreme at full throttle.

The best part of my postgraduate degree

For me, the favourite part about a postgraduate degree was getting to know a number of wonderful people like colleagues, lecturers and university staff. Working with my supervisor, conducting fieldwork and presenting my work in colloquiums were fun too. But nothing can beat viva voce (just kidding!).

What I’d change about my journey

Naturally, there are always better ways of doing things in our lives; the same goes for our postgrad years as we all look back and think that life and studying itself could be done in better and perhaps easier ways. But I think none of these really matter, because it is through mistakes that we learn to be better. So, I would not change a thing about my postgrad life. But if I am to mention one thing, I would say I wish I appreciated the postgrad life even more!