Candidate for the position of History, Classics & Archaeology Undergraduate School Representative

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Eleanor McKie

Hi everyone, I am Eleanor McKie, and I would love to be your Undergraduate HCA School Representative. I am a second-year English Literature and History student, and I feel very lucky to be studying with you all in Edinburgh.

I am a massive Scottish history geek, dog-lover, Franz Ferdinand listener and you can usually find me wandering the Old Town or blowing my student budget on baked goods.

My university studies and experiences have been unconventional and because of this, I have decided to run as representative to ensure everyone not only gets the most out of their university experience but that they don’t feel isolated and ignored.

My university career has been defined by the disruption of 2020, being a working-class student and creating strong friendships that can get me through a global pandemic. For these reasons, my aims as your representative for HCA would be-

  • To provide more academic support to students. I would endeavour to create more workshops for issues with essay writing and referencing, and some with advice from professors. I felt daunted by the jump from secondary to university, especially being from a working-class background and I reckon more academic support would ensure others do not feel like I did. I think there is a significant gap between the support offered by LLC and HCA, and I want to change that. I would also like to work with local schools to help the next generation prepare for the jump.
  • To be a friendly face you can come to with any problem. The pandemic has been isolating, and I have felt the strain of not seeing my friends or being able to make new ones. I did also have difficulty engaging with my peers last year, feeling all the negativities of imposter-syndrome. Therefore, I would ensure no one felt isolated, and would do my best to offer sound advice and be approachable (online just now, hopefully not for the whole year!).
  • An improvement in tutor/student relationships. Only this year have I gained the confidence to reach out and speak up when I feel I need more help. There are certain things I feel tutors can do to make students more at ease, even just goofy ice breakers. I think in this current climate, a go-to face is integral to feeling confident in your studies and I would encourage students to engage more with their tutors and professors and be the middle-man to improve relations.

I believe that dedication, determination, and kindness are the best ways to implement change. As your HCA Undergraduate School Representative, I would draw on my own experiences to make the school year as stress-free and as fulfilling as possible for you.