GradFest 2015 Team

QMUL’s first ever Grad Fest was brought to you by the following PhD students: Kasia Niemiec, Ngoc Nguyen, Halimat Raji, Sam Miles, Sarah Sauvé, Zareen Khan, Lindsay Aqui and Alexandra Effe.

Kasia (Kate)

Hi, my name is Kasia and I’m a second-year PhD student at Clinical and Diagnostic Oral Sciences. Although I’m a pharmacist, my project is on head and neck cancer and its association with human papillomavirus. I can’t imagine life without books, music and coffee.



I’m Ngoc, a third year PhD student at Clinical and Diagnostic Oral Sciences. My background is in biotechnology and I am currently working on the impact of the misregulation of a homeobox transcription factor in head and neck cancer.


I’m a Canadian living in London, working towards a PhD in history and politics. My project focuses on Britain’s relationship with the European Community in the 1970s, in the period when Britain’s relationship with Europe was renegotiated and put to the British people in a nation-wide referendum. I’m interested in Britain’s characterisation as Europe’s ‘awkward partner’, and other awkward partnerships within the EU, for example the relationship with Greece. When I’m not researching and writing, I’m often found cycling around Richmond Park.

sarah_fun profile

My name is Sarah Sauvé, I am a first year PhD student in EECS in the Music Cognition lab. My research touches on themes of timbre, auditory streaming and musical expectation. I studied piano and composition in undergrad, to then go into music psychology. Outside of university, I’m very involved in an international not-for-profit peace education organization called CISV. In London I run weekend camps, activities and activism work and I also coordinate and work on national and European projects, all aimed to educate and inspire action for a more just and peaceful world!  I recently went to Luxembourg for the Wild West Weekend, where the Western European neighbourhood got together for workshops, activities and development as an organization in our region; the theme was Back to the Future and that was my go at fancy dress!

Sam Miles prof pic 2My name is Sam Miles (Twitter: @sammiles87) and I’m a second year ESRC-funded PhD student in the Geography Department. I got involved in the QMUL Grad Fest because I’m the elected Post-Graduate Research Rep for Queen Mary Students’ Union, and I think any project run by PhD students as volunteers deserves our support! It’s turned out to be a great way of getting experience in conference organising. My PhD explores how locative digital media – that is, GPS-enabled apps on your smartphone like Grindr or Tinder – change ideas of space and place for gay men living in London. How does new technology overlay physical space to make a hybrid terrain? Outside of the digital world, I teach Queen Mary Geography undergraduates and tutor in local schools for the Brilliant Club.


My name is Halimat and I am a second year PhD student in the School of Engineering and Materials Science. My research area is focused on understanding the mechanism of corrosion around the taper junction of hip replacement devices (used in the treatment of arthritis of the hip) with a view to proposing a way of markedly reducing the phenomenon clinically. My interests outside research include Latin dance and powerlifting.


I’m Alexandra, and I am working on contemporary literature in the Department of English. My thesis is about self-reflexiveness and ethics in J. M. Coetzee’s writing.