Please find below testimonials from some of our current graduate researchers about their experience of the Mental Health PhD Program.

If you are a mental health graduate researcher, this program is a fundamental building block to understanding how dynamic, complex, inspirational, positive and exciting the field of mental health can be.

“The MHPP has inspired and scaffolded me throughout my graduate research journey. Without the MHPP, I would not have been able to take part in as many aspects of the PhD and my research project would not have the same level of depth, breadth and cohesion. As a member of the MHPP you will have the privilege of belonging to a multidisciplinary research community with a unique team spirit that will become instrumental to your development as a researcher in the field of mental health. Your participation in the MHPP will facilitate you to connect with researchers in new ways and to recognise how multi-dimensional mental health is, by collaborating together and having the courage to engage in all that the MHPP has to offer. ”

Tam Dennis - Graduate Researcher at the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences

I am very fortunate to be a part of this amazing community and highly recommend it for any PhD student in the area of mental health!

“The MHPP has been incredibly helpful for me in making the transition to a PhD. It has provided me with an incredible community of PhD students with diverse backgrounds but with a similar passion for mental health. It has also been a great resource to become aware of the numerous opportunities available for us PhD students to help us develop academically, professionally and personally. Lastly, it has clearly been designed for research students, as it is very flexible and open to your input and responsive to your questions and interest.”

Kavisha Fernando - Graduate Researcher at the Department of Psychiatry

The Mental Health PhD Program (MHPP) is a wonderful program which promotes learning and professional development during your PhD journey.

"The content of the events are based on the needs and interests of the community and the MHPP members form a great network of support. Throughout my involvement with the program I have developed public speaking skills, learnt from renowned guest speakers, helped organise events and workshops on member requested topics, and embraced the multidisciplinary lens with which we can research mental health. Our multidisciplinary community promotes academically invigorating and open-minded discussions in a supportive environment. I highly recommend the MHPP for students at any stage of their candidature researching any aspect of mental health (right from a pre-clinical and molecular level to those with a clinical and translational focus) - come for the amazing professional development opportunities, stay for the supportive spirit of likeminded researchers."

Carra Simpson - Graduate Researcher at the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences

What I like about the MHPP is that it provides a platform which is graduate-researcher driven and truly multidisciplinary; it provides opportunities for developing skills which we identify as useful and are above and beyond the scope of our individual departments.

“Also as a part-time and off-campus student, I use the MHPP as a place where I can stay in contact with other PhD candidates in mental health related fields, who all have different ways of approaching what we call “mental health”. Even if I were on-campus, the MHPP provides ways and means for exchanging ideas about how we can come to understand such a broad topic from very diverse backgrounds.”

Brendan Pearl - Graduate Researcher at the Department of Psychiatry

I recommend all students with a project related to mental health join the program, get involved and reap the benefits!

“The Mental Health PhD Program has given me the opportunity to consider the context of my PhD project and to see where my research fits along the spectrum of mental health. Connecting me with students that study mental health from the cell level and animal models all the way to population level studies, the program has given me an appreciation for the various approaches we all use to achieve our collective goal; to better understand and improve the lives of people living with mental ill health. The countless opportunities to engage in thought provoking discussions and more general PhD-related chats with peers and mentoring senior academics, has added immeasurably to my PhD experience.”

Hannah Savage -Graduate Researcher at the Department of Psychiatry

I highly recommend this program to any PhD students in the field of mental health research.

"Working at the Royal Children’s Hospital and Murdoch Children’s Research Institute you meet people from a diverse array of fields, but it is equally vital to connect with people from within the field of mental health. With a network of students across many university departments and centres, the Mental Health PhD program allows you to both learn about a variety of mental health topics that you would not have otherwise been exposed to, and the opportunity to step back from your research and place it in the context of the wider research field. The Mental Health PhD Program has also allowed me to form strong bonds with other PhD students and meet eminent researchers in the mental health field."

Phoebe Thomson - Graduate Researcher at the Department of Paediatrics

The Mental Health PhD Program creates an inspiring and supportive community of researchers who are united by a common passion for improving mental health and well-being.

"It is the community that makes this program so special, fostering connections between individuals from diverse disciplines and backgrounds, each bringing a unique perspective. I am incredibly grateful for the shared dialogues, brainstorming, networking, and ongoing support, which have been invaluable during my PhD candidature. The program also provides tailored professional development opportunities, including webinars and Q&A sessions with mental health professionals and academics, networking events, skill-based workshops, and individual consultations – all of which have helped with my current research and guided my future directions.”

Annai Charlton - Graduate Researcher at The Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health

The Mental Health PhD Program provides me with lots of different opportunities; networking, career development and the opportunity to ask experts from interdisciplinary fields for advice.

"The MHPP has helped me develop skills that I otherwise wouldn’t have developed, such as being able to communicate about research to people who work in related fields but use very different research techniques (animal work or qualitative research). It’s also a very social program, and I’ve met a lot of other very friendly PhD students. Being an off-campus PhD student, I sometimes felt a bit disconnected from the university, but this program has helped alleviate this feeling. The new online Teams platform is great, I get to check it whenever I want and there are optional events to join. I’ve found lots of them very useful and I ended spending about 1.5 hours a fortnight engaged with the program (5 minutes a day reading updates and chatting to other students and 1 hour attending an event such as an expert discussion, watching an interview or a coffee moment). I’m hoping to meet you soon and feel free to contact me if you have any questions!"

Yara Toenders - Graduate Researcher at the Centre for Youth Mental Health

Being a part of the MHPP community has been one of the best parts of my PhD.

"The MHPP offers a unique opportunity to interact with like-minded researchers from across the university, and to learn about the broad array of mental health research happening within the university. The program facilitates multidisciplinary collaborations, and broadens perspectives on mental health research. Perhaps most importantly, the MHPP lends itself to developing friendships that provide some of the necessary support to help during the PhD. Learning from the experience of other students in the program has been invaluable in learning what to expect along the way in your own PhD journey as well as learning how to ride out the bumpy times. Being a part of the MHPP has been one of the best parts of my PhD experience, from the numerous professional development opportunities on offer, to the wonderful researchers I have got to meet by being a part of the group, and I would highly recommend this program to anyone who is eligible to apply!”

Anna Ross, Graduate Researcher at the Centre for Mental Health, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health