Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Doctoral Training Programme
   
   
  

Student Experience

Learn about our BBSRC DTP students and share in their experiences. 

What has been the most interesting part of your PhD so far?

Towards the end of my first year I had the opportunity to attend the 20th International Congress of Arachnology in Colorado, USA.

This got me talking to lots of people both, academically and socially, and through these conversations

I have been able to develop ideas for my research project, meet important advisors and make (some slightly strange) friends along the way!

gibbons
 

What do you enjoy most about being part of our DTP?

The 2015 cohort is made up of 50 individuals and this has inevitably made the transition to postgraduate life a lot easier.

Groups within the cohort regularly meet up for lunch, Friday cake and wine sessions, 'class trips' which so far have included long weekends to Dublin and Barcelona and rotating sports activities held weekly.  

Alastair Gibbons: Intake year 2015.

 alex

Where did you go on placement and what did you learn from the experience?

I went to a company based at Biocity in Nottingham. I had a fantastic time on my placement and learned a lot of different things about science in industry.

I was working for a very small company at a time when they were just looking to go into production on the product so it was incredibly busy. Because of that I sampled jobs from pretty much every area of work at the company. This was perfect because I felt like a really important part of the company whilst I was there and got to learn as much as possible.

What opportunities have you had due to being part of our DTP?

I have been fortunate enough throughout my PhD to experience a range of different activities.

I have been to conferences in Bristol, Oxford and Croatia.

I was also at the Tomato growers association conference where I made links for potential future job opportunities.

I have also been to see the work that goes on at diamond synchrotron and spend a couple of days looking round those facilities.

Furthermore I have taken part in some outreach activities whereby I could go and talk to the general public and school children about the kind of work that I do.

Alex Fletcher: Intake year 2014

 

What aspect of the DTP have you found most useful?

I found the rotations extremely useful.

It was really good to get exposure to a variety of labs, not only for my skill set but also to help me better understand what area of research I wanted to focus in on.

Also meeting a range of academic supervisors and appreciating their different style of supervision taught me how to adapt to different working environments.

 

Kathryn (Rosie) Brian: Intake year 2014

Rosie

Where did you go on placement and what did you learn from the experience?

My PIP was at Sense about Science EU in Brussels which was great! I had already written a couple of blog posts for Sense about Science so knew them and liked what they stand for.

Overall my experience was brilliant. I learned a variety of skills involved in science communication and also learnt the tiniest bit of French while I was there.

 

Sofia

What do you enjoy most about being part of our DTP?

As a Rothamsted student, being a part of the Nottingham DTP has given me the benefits of having a cohort and supportive peers in the same stage of PhD life who are often experiencing similar highs and lows.

I also thoroughly enjoyed the lab rotations, without which I would not have had the experience of working at Rothamsted Research, which I ultimately chose for my PhD and has shaped my career path up to now.

What aspect of the DTP have you found most useful?

The Academia talks at the Nottingham DTP annual conference Spring School 2017 were incredibly useful and demonstrated the feasibility of academia as a career path, as well as guidance on different routes to take as well as the pros and cons of a career in research.

Spring School has also helped me become a more confident public speaker, and learn how to better communicate my research.

 

Sofia Iqbal: Intake year 2014

 

Theo

What do you enjoy most about being part of our DTP?

I enjoy being a part of a large cohort of students with very diverse research interests and backgrounds.

It is a very friendly environment that helps you go through the course of your PhD as a part of larger family and without feeling lonely or isolated.

Theocharis Tsoleridis: Intake year 2013

What has been the most interesting part of your PhD so far?

I have had a lot of interesting moments during my PhD!

One of them was when I discovered novel coronaviruses in European rodents.

It was a thrilling moment that shaped the route of my PhD, led to a publication and to 3 conference presentations.

Other highlights of my PhD were when I won the Early Researcher of Excellence Award from the School of Life Sciences in 2016 and the Tri-Campus Postgraduate Prize Award from the Graduate School in 2017!

 

What opportunities have you had due to being part of our DTP?

Being part of the DTP has given me the opportunity to develop and broaden my skills & interests beyond the lab.

The DTP has supported me in establishing the S.T.E.M. Outreach Nottingham group, which has allowed me to coordinate collaboration between staff, students and other local professionals to deliver a wide variety of public engagement projects to numerous non-specialist audiences, such as with the international Pint of Science festival.

As I result of this additional work alongside the core of my PhD, I will soon be starting my PIP which will involve working jointly with the University of Nottingham and local education charity, Ignite!, to coordinate and deliver Nottingham’s Festival of Science and Curiosity 2018 and more.

Matt

 What has been the most interesting part of your PhD so far?

Probably the first several months on rotation.

There’s always so much fascinating stuff in research that you’d never be able to delve deeper into, so I found it really fascinating having a brief opportunity to explore different research avenues that I otherwise wouldn’t have had the opportunity to do.

Matthew Young: Intake year 2015

See our students getting involved in science outreach at: https://youtu.be/-qr8O_Ie5ts

 

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Doctoral Training Programme

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

Tel: +44 (0) 115 8466946
Email: bbdtp@nottingham.ac.uk