Secondments to Western Sydney University from 2018-2020 by Johannes Kirchner

I was lucky enough to spend two secondments in Sydney, one for 5 months from November 2018 to April 2019 and a second one for another 7 months from August 2019 to March 2020. Working with Tamara Watson from Western Sydney University (WSU) was a fantastic experience and completely changed the course of my Phd studies. Thanks to Tamara I got to know and exchange ideas with a lot of great researchers from WSU and the other Sydney universities. Her contacts to MRI specialists from St. Vincent’s Hospital enabled me to run an MRI experiment myself, an opportunity I wouldn’t have had at my home university. The research I conducted in Sydney layer the foundation for my doctoral thesis and led to several collaborative publications.

Sydney must be one of the nicest places to live in the world. There is such a large variety of cafes, restaurants and local breweries spread all over the town. You find a few dozens of beautiful beaches in the city area, and the nearby Blue Mountains are great for hiking and rock climbing! I’ve made some great friends at WSU and got to experience so many classic Australian traditions with them: having a barbecue on Australia Day, spending Christmas at the beach, cheering for the local tennis players at the Australian Open…

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