Committee 2016–2017

Our MCR has a highly active committee that is responsible for most aspects of student life. The committee is elected from Balliol MCR members in accordance with the MCR Constitution, and holds regular, minuted meetings that all MCR members are invited to attend. Please don't hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions or suggestions about graduate student life at Balliol.

Information on past committees is available from 2009. All e-mails are

The 2016–2017 MCR Committee members are:

Philip Williams

E-mail: mcr.president
Field of Study:
Home Country:

I am a former lawyer currently pursuing an MPhil, which I am hoping to turn into a DPhil. Having had a wonderful year staying in the Manor last year, I now live near Pembroke College with my Fiance, Debby, who makes excellent cupcakes.

Megan MacLean

E-mail: mcr.vicepresident
Field of Study: MPhil in Classical Archaeology
Home Country: Canada

Hi everyone, my name is Megan, and I will be your MCR Vice-President this year. My main role is to manage all domestic affairs in the graduate facilities and residences, including administering the room ballots and surveys, and liaising with various representatives such as the kitchen and coffee reps. My other major responsibility is to attend college meetings, work with the President to represent the interests of the MCR, and act on behalf of the President in her absence.

I’m currently in my second year at Oxford working towards an MPhil in Classical Archaeology. Before Oxford, I attended the University of Calgary in Canada, where I received a BA in Archaeology and a BA in Greek and Roman Studies. I enjoy playing a variety of sports and am a member of the Oxford Blues volleyball team.

Jess Lamb

E-mail: mcr.treasurer
Field of Study: DPhil in Inorganic Chemistry
Home Country: United Kingdom

Hi! I'm Jess and I'm your treasurer for the next year. I'm in my second year of an Inorganic Chemistry DPhil having previously graduated from the University of Leeds. I'll be in charge of all the MCR finances, reimbursements and anything else money related. I'm also happy to answer any questions you may have on college related finances, such as battels. Welcome to Balliol!

Greg Farquhar

E-mail: mcr.secretary
Field of Study: DPhil in Computer Science
Home Country: United Kingdom

Hi, I'm Greg, your MCR Secretary. This means I have the *enormous* responsibility and privilege of... writing minutes and sending occasional email notices. When not attending to these essential secretarial duties, I'll be doing machine learning research, playing guitar, and waiting for summer aka watermelon season. Balliol MCR is an incredibly welcoming and fun community; so get involved, have a great time, and feel free to ask me or any of the committee if you need anything!

Social Secretary
Lorenzo Caravaggi

E-mail: lorenzo.caravaggi
Field of Study:
Home Country:

Coming Soon!

Bar Manager
Ellie Scott

E-mail: eleanor.scott
Field of Study: DPhil in Oncology
Home Country: United Kingdom

Hello everyone!!!! I'm Ellie and I'll be helping run our student bar, the Megaron, this year with my friend Katrien. We are incredibly lucky at Balliol to have this fantastic space to hang out in, and our role as bar managers is to ensure that it remains the social heart of the graduate community: somewhere to hang out, relax in the evenings and meet up with friends. As well as keeping the bar fully-stocked with all manner of snacks and drinks, we'll be putting on lots of fun events throughout the year to keep you entertained (Christmas cocktails???). We're also keen to get both freshers and stalers involved in various bar-related decisions; this is YOUR Megaron, so please don't hesitate to contact us with any suggestions/ideas!

After doing my undergrad at Bristol, I am now in my second year of a D.Phil in Oncology, researching novel virus-based treatments for cancer. When I'm not wearing a lab coat, I like to bake, read, play piano and sing (on occasion - I'm not very good) in the college choir. Living in the manor is such a treat and there's nothing better than winding down in the evenings with a beer and some friends in the beautiful garden. Welcome to Balliol MCR!

Bar Manager
Katrien Morbee

E-mail: katrien.morbee
Field of Study:
Home Country:

Coming Soon!

Sports Officer
Andrea Schnabl

E-mail: andrea.schnabl
Field of Study: DPhil in Engineering Science
Home Country: Germany

Hi everyone, my name is Andrea and I will be this year’s MCR Sports Rep. My job is to look after the gym, the other sports facilities and the needs of the MCR sports teams. I will also try to keep you updated on the different teams (in case you want to join) and important games to encourage people to support our teams. If you have any questions about facilities, teams or suggestions for improvement, please let me know!

I’m in my second year of a DPhil in Engineering Science, working on tidal energy systems. Before coming to Oxford, I studied in Germany and South Africa. In my spare time I love to read, travel (unfortunately my list of places I want to visit never gets any shorter, as I always want to go back), play and watch sports. I am a part of the Women’s Blues Basketball team (at least when I’m not injured) and follow mainly basketball and football, but I also enjoy watching other sports (I haven’t quite got the hang of cricket yet, though).

Welfare Officer
Jamie Beacom

E-mail: jamie.beacom
Field of Study: DPhil in Mathematics
Home Country: Northern Ireland

Hey everyone! I'm Jamie and I'm you're Welfare Officer for this year! My job is to help look out for your well-being during your year as part of Balliol MCR, and to provide whatever support I can to ensure that it is a healthy and happy one.

As part of a team of people in college that includes the Dean, Chaplain, Nurse and Peer Supporters, I am here to provide you with confidential support, whether that be in emotional or physical well-being or sexual health. During the year, I will be keeping "office hours" during which I will be available in my room if anyone feels they would like to come by for a cup of tea or coffee and a chat (and biscuits). I'll also be available by e-mail and by phone, and am always happy to listen. As well as that, I can also help advise you on what resources are available in the city and in the university, if you feel that you might benefit from something.

I'm currently in my second year of a D.Phil. in mathematics, researching in arithmetic geometry. I came here straight after finishing my undergraduate degree at Hertford College, also in Oxford. So, I've been in Oxford for quite a long time and would like to think I know a thing or two about the place! If you need any recommendations for cafes/pubs/restaurants, just find me and ask me! In my free time I like watching daytime quiz shows like Pointless and the Chase, sampling lots of different gins, playing boardgames and sitting in different cafes pretending I'm working.

Women's Officer
Fanny Louvier

E-mail: fanny.louvier
Field of Study: DPhil in Economic and Social History
Home Country: France

I am a second year DPhil student in Economic and Social History. My research focuses on French and British domestic servants in the early twentieth century (and no, I don’t spend my time watching Downton Abbey). I am French and happy to chat with anyone who wants to improve their ‘bonjour, ca va?’. In my spare time I row for Balliol, so expect some boring chats about stroke rates and ergs, while wearing some tasteful all-in-ones. You’ll also see me a lot hanging in the MCR, drinking an objectionable number of cups of tea and working on my thesis.

Arts and Research Officer
Josh Jackson

E-mail: joshua.jackson
Field of Study: DPhil in Mathematics
Home Country: United Kingdom

Coming Soon!

Environmental Officer
Achas Burin

E-mail: achas.burin
Field of Study: DPhil in Law
Home Country: England/Kenya

While Britain may no longer have a Secretary of State for Climate Change, at least your MCR does. Hello! I am AK, your Environmental Officer. Together with all of you, I keep the MCR as environmentally-friendly as it can possibly be. In your rooms as well as in the communal areas of the graduate complex, we have segregated recycling facilities for food waste, recyclables and general waste. I also operate the MCR's bike loan scheme and my platform is to expand and improve the bike fleet and facilities that we currently have -- so that more of us can borrow a bike for as long as we want. In summer 2016, the MCR donated its abandoned bikes to a charity helping refugees in Calais and in London. Get in touch if you are keen to propose some environmentally friendly activities/practices like this; or let me know if you want to find out what you can recycle in Oxford.

Ethnic Minorities Officer
Marek Sullivan

E-mail: marek.sullivan
Field of Study: DPhil in Theology
Home Country:

I’m Marek, and I’ll be the Ethnic Minorities Officer this year. Despite its mad cosmopolitanism, Oxford can be a daunting and exclusionary place, especially for students arriving from abroad. It’s my job to make sure everyone feels at home, regardless of their ethnic, cultural, or religious background, and to fight all forms of discrimination in the college. Aside from being on hand to talk at any time, I will arrange a couple of race-related film screenings through the year, invite a speaker to discuss issues of racial discrimination, and regularly send out information regarding support facilities and social networks for ethnic minorities in Oxford.

I’m doing a DPhil in Theology that involves no theology (unless you think everything is theology anyway — TBD). My main foci are ‘secularism’, secularism and politics, and the history of the secular. I’m currently working on an alternative history of the secular that is more sensitive to issues of orientalist representation in eighteenth century Enlightenment discourse than Charles Taylor’s mega-important A Secular Age. In my spare time I walk, draw, and think about how much time I’m wasting, and how thinking about thinking I’m wasting time means I’m not wasting time.

LGBTQ+ Officer
Jared Field

E-mail: jared.field
Field of Study: DPhil in Mathematical Biology
Home Country: Australia

Hullo ! These things are really hard to write so here’s a link to a brill Beyonce song instead:

Please please shoot me an email if you want to chat about: Billie Holiday, maths (my first major), poetry (my second major was French Lit.) or anything LGBTQ+ related in Oxford (from the university wide graduate society to MCR bar swaps I’ll be organising).

IT Officer
Matthew Ryder

E-mail: mcr.computing.officer
Field of Study: DPhil in Engineering Science
Home Country: United Kingdom

Hi! I’m Matthew, and I'll be in charge of all the IT related tasks this academic year. Included in this are maintaining the mailing lists, running the website and any other computing related activities.

Despite being in the engineering department, my research is essentially computational chemistry with a little bit of neutron and x-ray spectroscopy. This is due to my interest in elucidating the mechanical and electrical properties of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). Outside of my scientific research I enjoy having a beer with friends, watching movies, playing board games and travelling.

General Officer
Lucy Rayfield

E-mail: lucy.rayfield
Field of Study: DPhil in History
Home Country: Wales

Hello! I’m Lucy, a pizza enthusiast from Wales. I specialise in French and Italian Renaissance theatre, early modern imitation theory, and cat videos on YouTube. I’ll be acting as General Officer, and you’ll see me helping out at lots of MCR events throughout the year. If you have any questions before you arrive/during your time at Balliol and aren’t sure who to contact, please do drop me a line! When I’m not busy with the MCR, I’m writing a thesis on the Italian influence on sixteenth-century French comedy. My hobbies are also quite theatrical, and I can usually be found directing or acting in one production or another. Alternatively I’ll be at a Zumba or yoga class, eating my body weight in banana bread at the Handlebar Café, or swaying along to Kate Bush in my room.

Affiliations Officer

Disabilities Officer

Living-Out Officer