The wonderful, stylish Dr. Janet Sheppard (see photo below!) who has been a long-time counsellor at UVic, ran the TCG for years now, and there were always long waitlists for graduate students wanting to get into the two weekly groups, which I think speaks to the value and need for a resource for grad students such as this. The format of the TCGs were face-to-face, discussion-style group sessions, with there being an average of about 3-8 members in the groups. It's been a little quieter over the summer, which I've very much enjoyed.
|Janet and I at our last TCG meeting! I was feeling very sentimental about the goodbye.|
Participating in the group really turned around my perspectives about my thesis experience. It was immensely valuable to learn that the struggles I was facing are universal among graduate students; that the uncertainties and lingering questions and doubt about my abilities were part of the impostor syndrome; that talking about my fears and worries made me feel loads better, and better able to cope with those concerns; that by discussing concerns about graduate research, I would open myself up to the kindness and generosity and insight of my colleagues in the TCG; and, that by participating in the group, I would be able to get excited with, cheer on, and root for students who actually finished their degrees!! In turn, finishing became an achievable goal for me again, which for a while there, I wasn't able to see, anymore.
|Mystery tree down in Beacon Hill Park. So beautiful! :)|
|Water lily out at Thetis Lake! I scared up a number of green frogs getting to this photo.|
I've kept in touch with two colleagues from my TCG, and if nothing else, will pursue check-ins with the two of them. We're on roughly a similar timeline, with the three of us aiming to wrap up our degrees in the fall. Here's to keeping up the momentum.