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The road to a graduate degree has its ups and downs.

When things aren’t going according to plan, there is someone you can turn to. Our advocacy service is

  • free;
  • confidential;
  • completely independent from the University.

Our advocates provide advice and options, but you make the decision as to how to proceed, and we’ll support you all the way. As we are not part of the University, we do all we can to help you get the best outcome possible.

MGA Advocacy services are delivered in accordance with the MGA Advocacy Charter. To read the Charter, please click here.

How we can help

  1. After you contact us, an advocate will get in touch with you via email or phone within 1-2 working days. We may ask you for more details or some relevant documents to help us understand your situation.
  2. You can choose to meet with or chat to your advocate in a one-on-one consultation. In this meeting, your advocate may offer advice and discuss options available to you.
  3. If you need to complete a statement, form, or letter, your advocate can look over your draft and provide you with feedback and suggestions.
  4. Advocates can also give you tips on how to prepare for any meetings you may need to attend. They can typically attend a meeting with you as a support person, though they will not be able to speak on your behalf.
  5. It is up to you which, if any, of your advocate’s advice you would like to follow. You can contact your advocate again at any time with updates to your situation or if you have new questions you’d like to ask.

Book an appointment with an MGA Advocate

Our advocates are available for one-on-one appointments during regular business hours. Our advocates are located at the Caulfield and Clayton campuses, but provide services for graduates enrolled at all on-campus and off-campus locations, as well as online or distance education.

Appointments can be conducted over the phone, via Zoom, or in-person at either the MGA’s Caulfield or Clayton office.


Meet the Team

The MGA advocacy team is led by legally qualified senior advocate, Zuzana Quinn. Zuzana is highly experienced and has a detailed understanding of the challenges faced by graduate students. Find out more about the team below:

Zuzana Quinn - Senior Advocate

An MGA Advocate for over 25 years, Zuzana Quinn is the coordinator for the advocacy service. She has a legal background with Monash University as her alma mater (her last degree being a Master of Laws). Zuzana’s area of expertise is advising students on their intellectual property rights and authorship. Her experience and expertise has helped her support thousands of graduate students over the years. She is often seen around Monash presenting MGA inductions and ‘tips of the trade’ to graduate students and believes the traits to success are persistence, lobbying, integrity and kindness. Zuzana’s mission at the MGA is to continue to deliver tailored, quality support to all the different cohorts of graduate students.

James Breheny

James Breheny has been an MGA Advocate since 2018. He has previously worked as both a Victorian Parliamentary and Parliament of Australia Electorate Officer. Through these roles, James gained firsthand experience assisting young adults and disadvantaged groups with navigating unfamiliar processes and procedures. James’ tertiary qualifications comprise a Bachelor of International Relations and Master of International Development. As an MGA Advocate, James has assisted in resolving hundreds of MGA cases, including: general/academic misconduct allegations, placement terminations, declined special consideration applications, complaints and PhD/Research course progression issues. James is a mental health first aider and in his spare time, enjoys cooking, reading and spending time with his family and friends. He is passionate about assisting disadvantaged groups, and recently volunteered as board member for not-for-profit organisation Latitude: Directions for Young People.

Sarah Murphy

Sarah taught English as a second language in South Korea, so she remembers what it’s like to pack up one’s life, move to a new country, settle in a new town, with a new language, and begin working, all from day one. As an MGA Advocate, Sarah has assisted hundreds of students with various difficulties and issues. These include: general/academic misconduct allegations, placement terminations, declined special consideration applications, supervision cases, and PhD and Coursework progression issues. As a member of Monash’s Ally Network and a mental health first aider, Sarah is passionate about helping students from diverse backgrounds. Outside of her work she is an avid cyclist and gamer.

Ying Xu

Ying Xu joined the MGA advocacy team in 2018. Her prior background is in the fields of migration and business consulting. Ying’s tertiary qualifications comprise a double Bachelor of International Relations and Bachelor of Laws. Ying understands the difficulties of navigating a complicated system like Monash, as well as what it’s like to find yourself suddenly immersed in a new system of rules and expectations. Ying has assisted hundreds of graduate students across a range of issues which include: misconduct allegations, placement terminations, fee refund applications, declined special consideration, supervision issues, milestone issues, and PhD/Research course progression. Ying is a member of Monash’s Ally Network and a mental health first aider, and is passionate about helping students from diverse cultures and backgrounds. She is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.

Hamida Afzali

Hamida joined the MGA advocacy team in 2021. Prior to this she completed a Bachelor of International Relations and a Master of Arts. As a previous graduate student herself, she understands the challenges and unique support required by students throughout their studies. As an MGA advocate, Hamida has assisted and advised students in different matters ranging from welfare assistance, academic misconduct allegations, declined special consideration applications, complaints and course progression issues. Hamida is committed to providing advocacy and assisting graduate students to navigate their studies alongside the often complicated university procedures.

Common Issues

Not sure if we can support you with your issue? If your concerns relate to your experience at Monash, we can likely advise and support you, or direct you to someone who can. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with an advocate if you find yourself facing uncertainty.

Some of the most common issues our team of advocates see each day includes:

Other issues we can help with also include:

Contact the MGA Student Advocacy and Academic Support team

To get in contact with one of our advocates, please book an appointment via email or fill in our online form.

Everything you provide in the form is treated as private and confidential. Only starred fields are compulsory. Demographic data is collected for statistical purposes only.

The MGA team

Got a question or request about anything at all? Get in contact with one of our staff members – we’d love to hear from you. Alternatively, drop by the MGA office at Clayton or Caulfield so we can help!

Meet your current elected representatives

Curious to know who’s representing you at the moment? Get to know your elected representatives, what they do and how you can get involved.

Work for the MGA

The MGA employs Monash graduate students to fill the receptionist roles at the Clayton and Caulfield offices. When a vacancy arises we advertise the position through our email newsletter and on our website.

The Monash Graduate Association (MGA) is the representative body for all graduate research and coursework students enrolled at Monash University. So, what sets us apart from the University services? The MGA is an independent, not-for-profit association governed by graduate students, for graduate students. Our primary aim is to be there for you! If you can’t find what you are looking for, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.

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Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which our four Australian campuses stand and their continuing connection to the land on which we live and work. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging.