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H.A. Hellyer - Egyptian alumni ambassador

Course: PhD Ethnic Relations (2001-05)
City of residence: Cairo/Oxford
Employer: Visionary Consultants Group/University of Warwick
Interests: Public Policy/Non-Profit Management/Research Professional
Contact details: info at hahellyer dot com

What did you study at Warwick?

I was at Warwick from 2001 to 2005 as a PhD student, and then associated with the University afterwards through employment. I studied Ethnic Relations, which is a roundabout way of saying I looked at pretty much anything I wanted in the domain of my subject area, cutting across Sociology, Politics, Law and History – which is probably why I did it. My PhD supervisor was a wonderful gentleman, Professor Muhammad Anwar, who was a clear example of a practitioner-academic/academic-practitioner, which I aspire to be in my own work. One of my clearest memories of being under his supervision (and years after finishing my PhD, I still cannot bring myself to call him a ‘colleague’, always referring to him as my supervisor) was that he never failed to ask about me or my family when we had our meetings – he took a keen interest in me as a person, and not just as a supervisor.

Do you have any fond memories?

There are far too many. Most of them have to do with the One World Week, which I became involved in as one of the older members in my second year – I was a founding-member of the One World Forum, and became its first Deputy Chair. It was a wonderful thing for students to be a part of, and I always marvelled at how people within in managed to stay on top of their studies and still contribute in the way that they did.

Other memories would definitely be part of the Orientation Week, which I was regularly a part of – it was great to welcome new students to the campus every year, and offer some words of comfort to the parents that were leaving their babies behind!.

Where did you live?

I was a resident tutor at Redfern for pretty much all of my time while at Warwick, which was interesting considering I was the same age (or even younger) as many of the finalist students. fortunately, no-one realised till it was too late.

Were you a member of any societies?

I do not think so – although I certainly got involved in a number of things!

What are you doing now?

I've been a Fellow at Warwick University for some time, and at one time was a Senior Research Fellow (I think the youngest in Warwick's history). I'm also a director in a research consultancy that does research in Europe and the MENA region, which partially explains why I shuttle between both all the time. Why am I in Egypt so often? Once you drink from the Nile, you can never have enough. (OK – figuratively speaking – please, no one do that!)

Why did you decide to become an alumni ambassador?

Thats easy. Its a pleasure to be a associated with Warwick, and on top of it, i'm sure that there are so many magnificent people who are linked to the University – I'd like to meet them all!

Contact H.A. Hellyer if you want to attend or suggest an event in Egypt or want to make contact with the alumni community there.