The practice of theory

10 August 2015

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Discover how you can advance your career with a postgraduate qualification from Crawford School at the Graduate Studies Information Session on 18 November 2015.

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What does it take to complete a thesis?

One Crawford School graduate says the ‘trick of the trade’ is balance.

Monira Ahsan’s resume looks like a global trek, with degrees from Bangladesh, England and Australia and key positions in organisations such as The British Council and Save the Children.

But, still she wanted to achieve something more and Crawford was the place to do it.

“My experience in both theory and practical application has given me what I needed to get me motivated for a PhD at Crawford,” she said.

A few short few weeks ago Monira stood on stage with former Crawford School Director Tom Kompas and her fellow PhD graduates, was congratulated for the outstanding work of her PhD, and became Dr Ahsan.

Monira grew up in Bangladesh and first came to Australia with Save the Children – traveling across the country to promote the program through radio, TV, newspaper and community events.

Her drive and expertise saw her promoted to the Deputy Country Director of Save the Children Bangladesh program – a position she left to pursue her research at Crawford.

Monira has a passion for working with vulnerable groups and has devoted her career to making the world a better place for those that often fall through the cracks.
“I enjoyed my time in Australia and seeing all the different places but, it was the opportunity to spread the word about Save the Children that was amazing,” she said.

“I wanted to use my unique combination of theory and practice to solve real world problems.”

Monira’s PhD thesis looks at the structures and processes that influence children and youth’s political participation in private and public policy-making in Bangladesh.

“My research demonstrates the tension between and intersection of moral economy with political economy in creating multiple exclusions of children and young people from personal and public decision-making.”

Now her time as a Crawford PhD student is over, Monira is nervous, but excited about the possibilities for her future.

“Crawford has given me an excellent opportunity for cross-disciplinary research and to get involved in addressing key policy challenges and I know I will take that with me wherever I go.”

By Kelly Hayward

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