I have a BSc in Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences from Brunel University London, an MSc in Mental Health Studies from King’s College London and I’m now a PhD student at Oxford Brookes.
Currently I am an intern with the Emerging Mind’s Network and Oxford University, this is a 3-month internship that will end Feb 2021. I’m also a first year PhD student.
I have always had an interest in psychology, but through personal experience and my undergraduate degree I realized I wanted to study more about the use of exercise and physical activity to help with mental health conditions.
Psychology isn’t something that’s heavily pushed to be studied, I feel it’s the least pushed out of STEM especially in African households. Lack of representation made it harder for me to even see myself in the field, it was only when I had fully decided I want to do a PhD and started going to events that I saw others like me and felt like it is really possible.
My parents have always been supportive of my goals and have always made me feel like it’s possible for me to achieve them. They always push for a balance of working hard but also resting and allowing yourself to relax. Their ability to push through and get to where they are even with language barriers has always been inspiring.
Continue to create more groups like the ‘BlackIn(subject)’ groups on twitter, so that more people can see just how many of us are here. Continue to hold events and showcase the amazing work people are doing via social media, newsletters, conferences etc.
Don’t be afraid to reach out for help, had I not done that I wouldn’t be where I am. Search and you will find those that you are looking for, they may not necessarily be in the limelight or the people most spoken about, but they do exist. There is nothing wrong with wanting to have a community of fellow Africans in your field.
I have an Instagram page @PT_fiyory where I post about mental health, physical activity and exercise. I also have a free physical activity booklet for anyone who needs help and wants to keep active, if you drop me an email or DM I can send it over
Do you identify as an African in STEM? If so, please send us some basic information to see if we can profile you on the VSA page.
I think it’s about time you heard my story.