Five minutes with: Tasha Kitcher
What is your job title and how long have you worked at Loughborough?
I’m a Doctoral Researcher in the Communication and Media Department. My PhD is focused on uncovering the history of the ‘Electrophone’ which was a Victorian telephone device that allowed you to stream theatre, church services, and more into the home from 1893 up until 1938. It’s always really interested me as an early version of National Theatre Live, and I think it became especially relevant during lockdown when so many of us turned to online streaming to survive being trapped at home. I’ve been here since October 2019, so just a few months left for me now before I submit my thesis!
Tell us what a typical day looks like for you?
I’m in write-up mode right now, so most of my days are rather repetitive. I can hardly function before my first cup of tea, and then I usually spend the first hour of the day working through any little admin jobs that need doing. Quite often these days, I will spend some time at the start of the day sorting out bits for the upcoming Pint of Science festival in Loughborough which I am co-coordinating alongside some fellow Doctoral Researchers.
I then try and get a bit of writing done and always ensure I get out of the office for some air at lunch time. After that, it’s back to writing my thesis. I’m currently working on my final ‘findings’ chapter, which seems totally surreal to me, as I’m sure I only moved to Loughborough and started this research project just five minutes ago!
What’s your favourite project you’ve worked on?
In October 2022 I was invited to get involved in the Science Museum Group’s Broadcast 100 project which was really exciting to me. It was a series of exhibitions, events, and online content produced by the museum all focused on the 100th anniversary of the BBC. I was involved with the curation of the project, so I got to try my hand at translating archival research into lots of different formats including a major exhibition. I was able to stay on with the project up until the final exhibition opened at the National Media Museum last Summer. It was so lovely to see families engaging with the history we had been working on, playing with interactives the team had dreamed up, and talking about ‘fun facts’ I’d been geeking out over myself just months before.
What is your proudest moment at Loughborough?
I was really flattered to receive the PhD Award for Contribution to Knowledge at the 2021 PhD Awards, and even more so to be nominated for the 2022 DR President’s Award, but actually my proudest moment was probably working with the PhD Social and Support Network for three years. In 2021 we won the PhD Award for Best Team, and last year when I was Chair we organised some really fun events – including a massive PhD BBQ where over fifty people came to socialise and eat in the sun. I think the society always has done, and still does, a lot for the PhD community here at Loughborough, and I was really proud to be a part of that for so much of my time here.
Tell us something you do outside of work?
I’m currently training for Trek26 – a 26 mile walk around London this coming June for Alzheimer’s Society. So, a lot of my free time is spent walking, which at the weekend in a place like Loughborough is not a bad thing at all.
What is your favourite quote?
I’m actually obsessed with quotes, so this is quite a dangerous question. I think my favourite would probably have to be a quote by Albert Camus: “In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.” I think it says a lot about human nature… and certainly a lot about myself and any of my colleagues crazy enough to take on a PhD!
If you would like to feature in ‘5 Minutes With’, or you work with someone who you think would be great to include, please email Soph Dinnie at S.Dinnie@lboro.ac.uk.
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