Déanna Shea

Participating in Wellington Plus helped Déanna meet other students and inspired her to become more involved in her community.

PhD Chemistry
Wellington Plus Certificate and Award

Portrait of Dēanna Shea

Déanna’s boundless energy is demonstrated by the range of activities she undertook. Her first volunteer roles on campus were supporting students at International Orientation and VUWSA’s Stress Free Study Week. These roles motivated her to join the Postgraduate Student’s Association Executive (PGSA) and she volunteered as the Events Coordinator. Her aim was to motivate postgraduate students to get more involved in the fantastic opportunities on campus. To connect even further with students, she also volunteered with the Fruit and Vege Co-op.


Participating in the Growing Graduates Tree Planting day similarly inspired Déanna’s greater involvement with Conservation Volunteers New Zealand. Having come here from overseas to study, she found contributing to local environmental projects very rewarding and it also gave her a break from the pressures of study.

Déanna’s passion for science led her to be a Lab Demonstrator with outreach programmes in High Schools and to volunteer at the Hutt STEM Festival and the Space and Science Festival. Her energy and enthusiasm made her the ideal Ambassador for the University at Open Day, Orientation and Clubs Week. Déanna also took on a leadership role at the DCM Bookfair looking after a team of volunteers, and helped at community fundraising events for the Cancer Society and Heart Foundation.


The Wellington Plus activities enabled Déanna to increase her employability by developing her skills in communication, time-management, teamwork and leadership. Alongside her volunteering, she  made the most of the personal and professional development workshops, particularly those related to her PhD studies and career development.

“I would not have truly understood what community power means if I didn’t join and get deeply involved with Wellington Plus. I made the right choice in joining the Programme and I am a better person for it."
Déanna Shea