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Peer Learning Advisors (PLAs)

PLAs are your friendly local guides to study and uni life.

Update29 November: PeerConnect hours

PeerConnect will be unavailable on 29 November 2022 due to staff training.

For help, contact us.

PLAs are all experienced students and they're here to help you with everything uni life including finding the best coffee on campus, study tips, support services, using tech and meeting friends.

Keep up with the latest services, events and projects by the PLAs by following them on Facebook and Instagram.

PeerConnect

Video chat or message a Peer Learning Advisor.
Available Mon - Fri, 12pm - 4pm


Meet your PLAs

Iyat Zakwan Amrutha Rengen Keerat Bingyan Juan Kamal Helia Devanshi Marilyn Ullah Jessica Dora Mikaela Iyat Zakwan Amrutha Kamal Rengen Keerat Dora Bingyan Juan Helia Devanshi Marilyn Ullah Jessica Mikaela

Iyat


Hello! I’m an international student from Canada doing my degree in Dentistry here at Usyd! I chose to study in the medical field because I want to help people live their healthiest life, and I love human biology. Asides from sciences, I also enjoy writing poetry and filming video shoots on the side. In my free time, you’ll find me trying a new cooking recipe or watching anime in bed. I’m also a big fan of exploring, so feel free to ask me for fun things to do in Sydney, or great brunch places to visit!

Zakwan

Rengen


My name is Rengen and I am a second year medical student. I spend my time at uni learning about diseases in all of the human body systems, and I really enjoy being able to relate all of the scientific knowledge that we absorb to clinical cases and tasks. While I don’t yet know which specialty of medicine I would like to get into, I am considering a career in neurology or gastroenterology.
I’ve been part of the PLA team for nearly a year, and I really enjoy the social side of my job – being able to chat to other students about uni, work and life in general. Outside of being a student and PLA, I spend a lot of time cooking, attempting to exercise and watching (a bit too much) Netflix.
If you ever need someone to chat to, feel free to get in touch! You can find us on Chat Now, facebook or through the library website.

Keerat


Hey everyone! I’m Keerat! I’m currently a second year Doctor of Dental Medicine student at the University of Sydney. I’m a bit of a science nerd to the extent where I even went on a national science camp in high school – yeah, I know I was one of those kids. I especially love learning about foetal development, it’s so intriguing!
When I’m not drilling and filling, you’ll find me singing, reading and dabbling in a bit of sketching every now and then. I’ve recently discovered the world of digital art which has been super exciting! I’m also a big culture and history enthusiast, I love to learn about people and their backgrounds! Fun fact: I watch a lot of international tv shows (Korean, Turkish, Indian, Thai – you name it!), so I know the most random words from the most unexpected languages – I like to think it’s my superpower.
Having been studying at university for five years now and with a few more to go, I really understand the hardships faced whilst being a student, especially when living away from home. So I really like to do whatever I can to try and ease the struggles someone else might be facing, because I completely understand what it’s like. So, if you ever need someone to chat to, or even just want some study advice, anything, feel free to connect with me on PeerConnect via ChatNow.

Bingyan


Hi! I’m a PhD student in Biomedical Engineering. My project is about developing artificial nerves to regenerate large nerve injuries. I come from China and have studied at USYD for a long time. In my spare time, I enjoy participating in various volunteer and social events, especially passionate about finding a wide range of cuisine around Sydney. I also like traveling, watching anime, and playing badminton & board games. Feel free to chat with me about student life, studies, and life outside study.

Juan


My name is Juan, and I am a PhD student in Computational Biology with a background in health who spends most of his time trying to accurately simulate/model bacteria populations (gut microbes) on his computer. I also do some work in the laboratory. Among PLAs, I specialize in Coding and Video/Photo Editing, but I know my way around with other technologies such as 3D printing, carving and vinyl cutter. When I am not doing PhD/PLA stuff I enjoy playing video games and practicing gymnastics/Olympic weightlifting as a sport (spoiler: I am terrible at both).

Kun


Hi! I'm a PhD student in the school of architecture, design and planning, focusing on building science, biophilic design and VR. I am fascinated by how technology can help us build a more sustainable world. I like swimming, hiking, playing guitar and travelling. Been a student in USYD for a long time. Happy to start a conversation with anyone to talk about student life, studies, hobbies or anything!

Helia


I am studying Master of Pharmacy in USYD. I moved to Cyprus from Iran when I was 17 years old to start my university life and I moved to Australia in November 2021 and since then I’ve been missing Mediterranean sea every second of my day. I’ve been working as fitness trainer for more than 4 years so you might see me walking around in the campus with a big dumbbell shape bottle of water. I love researching about safe use of medications and their interaction and I am working on an Antimicrobial Stewardship in low- and middle-income countries now. When I am not geeking out about pharmacology or pushing people to do one more burpee when they are out of breath you can find me in dance classes.

I know how it feels to move to another country all on your own and the daily struggles with it’s bitter and sweet ups and downs so when ever you think you need someone to hear you or help you around during this journey, I am all ears for you.

Devanshi


Hi there! I am a second-year dentistry student from Canada here at U Syd. Dentistry has been my passion since high school, and I am honoured to help those in need. In my free time, I love working out, watching movies, and reading crazy fun facts. I am also a huge fan of travelling and finding good food wherever I go! So, feel free to reach out to me if you need someone to chat to about good food places in Sydney, study tips, good work out challenges, or if you just need a buddy in general!

Peggy


Hello! I am a PhD student in computer science, focusing on natural language processing. I am passionate about technology and artificial intelligence, and how they could assist us and improve our quality of life. Outside of study, I also enjoy playing piano, travelling, and practising Ikebana (the Japanese art of flower arrangement). I have worked for a few years after my undergraduate degree and now return to study for my postgraduate degree. Happy to chat if you need someone to talk about your student life, life after study, or anything in general!

Marilyn


I’m an international PhD student from India studying at the Department of Government and International Relations. My research entails international relations theory, foreign policies and strategic studies. I just began getting my hands dirty with 3D printing when Covid took over our lives. I’ve been a student for nearly 13 years now, having a mix of teaching and studying for a while allows me to know what to do on either side of the table! If I may call research to be a passion- I like spending time doing research over different topics ranging from recipes to décor to my own PhD topic as well. I also enjoy cooking- so I am always looking up new recipes and the different cuisines to try out. When not lazing on the couch I like going hiking or trying different cafes in Sydney- I do enjoy a good book now and then. Ever need to chat about student life, post student life or just life in general I am the person you give a shout out to!

Amrutha

Kamal


Hey! I am an international student from Bangladesh. I am doing my PhD in Plant Molecular Biology and investigating to answer how to reduce global nitrogen fertilizer application by using legume crops for sustainable agriculture. I am based at CCWF in Camden Campus and working as a PLA over a year at Camden Commons. I am always happy for a friendly chat if you would like to know more about Uni support and life outside study!
I like to organize social events and go for a hike with friends in my free time.

Ullah


Hi! I am Mohammad Rahmat Ullah from Bangladesh started my Ph.D. journey at The University of Sydney in 2017. My research focuses on drought and soil biogeochemistry in Australian grassland. I am based in Camden as there are more field and lab work opportunities in Agri land.

I am a nature lover, so I always try my best to develop ideas and techniques for improving natural resources. In addition, I like community work, traveling, hiking, playing chess, making friends, and cooking as my pastime. I am always happy to chat to help anyone develop a research proposal or write literature review and scientific article.

Jessica


Hi! My name is Jess and I am a PhD student in the Faculty of Medicine and Health. I am highly passionate in enhancing the diagnosis of disease with evidence-based solutions, with my research investigating the radiologic interpretation of silicosis. Outside of uni, I love finding and exploring new places to eat, walking my dog and travelling. Feel free to reach out at anytime, am always keen to connect and chat!

Dora


G'day! Ni Hao! I am Ruichun (Dora), a Master of Philosophy student in forensic psychology here at USYD. My current research is on jury decision-making with covert recordings and transcripts. I am also an artist outside uni practising mainly watercolour. I have been here for quite a while exploring around as I work through my degree. So, feel free to pop on PeerConnect to have a chat with me if you are looking for study tips or if you are just wondering about where to get good hot tea/iced coffee! :)

Mikaela


Hello! My name is Mikaela and I am a second year dentistry student. I’ve been studying at the University of Sydney for 5 years now and am keen to share all my knowledge and experiences I’ve gained – from academic support to life on campus and places to eat.

I have a keen interest in innovative technology and am currently designing an adventure VR game to teach tooth morphology. Outside of uni, you can find me volunteering as a surf lifesaver at Coogee beach, teaching kids to swim, playing piano and drinking lots of coffee.

I’m excited to help students navigate the ups and downs of university life, learn more about the amazing opportunities available (particularly in technology) and be a friendly face to all.

PeerPod

PeerPod is the PLAs own podcast about how the get the most from your uni life.

We share our own stories, chat with other students, and speak to experts about the support available to students, and how to find it.

Find out more about PeerPod!

Listen on Apple Podcasts Listen on Spotify Listen on Sound Cloud

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