Chemistry Resource Link
General Science Resource
22 - 30
In training or education
Broad training/education area
Route to training or education
10 GCSEs (inc Maths, Science and English), 3 A-Levels (Chemistry (A), Mathematics (A), Geography (A)) and AS-Level German (A), Undergraduate (Chemistry Masters, 1st Class, University of Oxford), Postgraduate (Chemistry PhD, University of Cambridge).
Medicinal Chemistry for Cancer PhD (University of Cambridge) - handed in thesis April 2011. Chemistry Masters (University of Oxford), graduated in 2006.
Was the route to your training or education typical, unusual or a bit of both?
Day in life
Usually, a typical day's hours are quite flexible so I would arrive between 9 and 10 am and go home sometime after 7pm. Long days I would go home around 10pm! I mainly do lab work, so that is hands on in a chemistry lab and working at the fume hood making compounds. Reactions do not usually take too long to set up but monitoring them, trying to work out if you have made what you want to make and purifying the compounds that takes the most time. Other than in the lab, I am in the office area. I go online to read or search for relevant literature to my work, or interpret my analytical data (to confirm I have made my compound). I break for lunch and usually for afternoon tea. Normally I work Monday to Friday but sometimes a day at the weekend is required. Science is unpredictable! My supervisors website is: http://www-spring.ch.cam.ac.uk/
5 - Contentedly happy
Life outside work
Music, fashion, films, spending time with friends and family, holidays abroad.
My parents are from Hong Kong, they came over to the UK to find work and bring up a family here. They had 2 successive Chinese take-aways and only just retired. I am one of two children. My brother is 3 years older and trained as an architect. I am soon to be the first female 'doctor' (PhD) in my extended family. I am the first Oxbridge student. Studying Chemistry was slightly controversial (I think my parents wanted me to do accountancy or law) but were happy as long as I was happy. They have always been pro-education and supportive of my studies.
What attracted you to your education or training?
I enjoyed Chemistry A-level so chose to study Chemistry for my undergrad. During this time, in my 4th year I was carrying out research for most of the year and I enjoyed it enough to consider and pursue a postgrad course. My particular course allows me to apply chemistry to a cancer setting.
16K - 20K
FutureMorph hidden science app
What type of scientist are you
PhDs are one of the most difficult things that you will ever do so make sure that you love it enough! They are filled with ups and downs and more often than not, people will not understand the emotions you experience from it unless they have done the same. You need the drive to persist and also know when to call it a day on a particular experiment. Importantly, when you get a 'good result', the feeling that comes with it makes it all worth it.