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Naomi Green

Naomi Green

PhD in Social Work and Social Policy - Class of 2024

‘A Part, Not Apart. Belonging and Integration: Muslims in Northern Ireland’

Supervisors

  • Dr Rosemary Moreland
  • Ms Goretti Horgan

I completed my MPhil in Biological Sciences in 2007 and moved on to work in Medical Genetics in the NHS for several years. After becoming more involved with voluntary community work, I became frustrated by rise of Islamophobia and the lack of awareness and research in this area. On a whim, I submitted a research proposal, never expecting it to be accepted—but it was. My research examines the history and evolving demographics of the Muslim population of NI, which has grown and diversified significantly in recent years.

It challenges the simplistic view of Muslims as a monolith or solely a migrant community by highlighting the diverse identities and strong networks within the Muslim population, including second-generation individuals who blend their heritage, Islam, and British/Irish culture.

My thesis emphasises the need for an intersectional approach to address the challenges of Islamophobia, racism, discrimination, and underemployment often faced by Muslims in NI.

Five years, a fourth child, a dyslexia diagnosis, and a global pandemic later, I am so happy to be finally graduating with my PhD. Returning to study as a mature student and mother of four hasn't been easy, but it has certainly been rewarding. Catching up on foundational learning in a new field was tough and imposter syndrome was very real, but the unwavering support of my supervisors, Rosemary Moreland, Goretti Horgan, and former supervisors Lucy Michael and Bethany Waterhouse-Bradley, guided me along the way. Their encouragement & guidance helped me turn a daunting journey into a successful one.

I am truly grateful for the opportunity to study at Ulster and the incredible support from my supervisors, the Doctoral College, my examiners, and all those who helped me along the way. For anyone about to embark on their PhD journey, or who is in the midst of it already, keep your end goal in sight and remind yourself why you embarked on this journey, there will be hurdles but don't give up! Make time for yourself amidst the busy schedule, burnout is real! Believe in your abilities, every setback is a step towards your ultimate success.

Aqib Javed

Aqib Javed

PhD in Intelligent Systems - Class of 2024

‘Intelligent Hotspot Prediction in Networks-on-Chip using Spiking Neural Networks’

Supervisors

  • Professor Jim Harkin
  • Professor Liam McDaid
  • Dr Junxiu Liu

Wait for your time, be persistent, and success will come; remember, there will always be someone who is proud of you.