A hard-working mum who started a family a year into her PhD was among more than 230 students graduating from Abertay University this week.
Susan Siebenaler, who took advantage of flexible part-time study, was watched by her four-year-old daughter Bethany as she collected her certificate during a second day of winter graduation ceremonies at the Caird Hall.
Her PhD project looked at how customers behave at self-service units, and was supported by NCR and Abertay’s R-LINCS research programme.
Inparticular, she was looking at how design can encourage customer honesty.
The 27-year-old said: “There were times when it was challenging to juggle my studies, working and being a mum, but I worked through it and NCR and Abertay were both really supportive.
“It is so important to have that flexibility and that’s what allowed me to complete my PhD.”
Susan first graduated with a degree in psychology from the School of Social and Health Sciences in 2012, before taking up a funded Masters by Research project which was later converted to a fully funded PhD studentship, falling within the School of Design and Informatics.
During her PhD, she attended conferences in the UK, Belgium and Los Angeles to present her work.
Susan has already secured a job with AXA where she analyses customer behaviour and coaches firms to apply behavioural thinking to optimise the customer experience.
Meanwhile Paralympic champion Karen Darke MBE was given an honorary degree.
The 46-year-old won gold in hand-cycling at the 2016 Paralympic games in Rio, and was appointed MBE in the 2017 New Year Honours for services to sport.
Darke is paralysed from the chest down following an accident, aged 21, whilst she was climbing sea cliffs near Aberdeen.