Northern Lights College instructor Darryn Wellstead has earned her PhD in philosophy sociology.
Darryn started at NLC in 2013 as a sessional instructor, before becoming an Indigenous student advisor, then moving into admissions, and finally into a permanent instructor position in 2017. She teaches sociology, anthropology, women and gender studies, communications, and philosophy.
Darryn found herself veering towards this career path while she was in grad school. “I was definitely interested in a career in post-secondary as a professor of some sort, I wasn’t sure what that was going to look like, but I feel very fortunate to have this job.” she said. “It’s a great job and I love it.”
Darryn’s PhD was ten years in the making; she started it in 2010, but decided she needed to focus on other things, such as her family, and took a break.
The idea of finishing came while she answered students’ questions while working in the admissions office.
Darryn said she often heard from students about where they would go after they finished at NLC, be it for a bachelor’s or master’s degrees, and even had a few discussions about PhDs.
“That was when I started to seriously consider going back to finish it,” said Darryn. She went back to her research in 2017 and finished in three years.
Darryn successfully defended her thesis and earned her PhD from the University of Ottawa.
Darryn is grateful for the support from NLC, even acknowledging the support she received from the college professional development fund in her thesis.