Category: Students

Amber Yitong Liu, MSc International Management, Imperial College Business School

“I hope every individual will no longer be entangled with the question of who they are, no longer fear their differences, and with joy, accept themselves and others, and accept this world that is inherently colourful like a rainbow.”

I was born and raised in China until I came to Canada at 13 and discovered I was genderfluid and bisexual. You can’t imagine my ecstasy upon realising that the ostracisation from school wasn’t because of my “weirdness” in my boyish behaviours, but rather a lack of understanding from those around me. One day, my high school finance teacher praised me, noting I was different from others, in a good way. Being the simple person I am, I decided finance was my favourite subject (the alluring world of finance also attracted me, of course).

After completing my undergraduate degree in finance and marketing, I decided to pursue a deeper understanding of the business world, and leverage my knowledge to assist those in need. Therefore, I joined the MSc International Management program at Imperial College Business School. It is the most exciting master’s program in business. I have opportunities to engage in worldwide projects in Cape Town, the US, Europe, and so many incredible places. It completes my UK experiences and makes this year of journey an unforgettable milestone in my life. (more…)

Mary O Kenneth, Research Postgraduate, Department of Computing

Mary O Kenneth

“I am excited about delving deeper into the world of AI, pushing the boundaries of what’s possible”

My journey has been a thrilling ride through the realms of technology and academia. Starting with a BSc in Computer Science at the Federal University of Lafia, Nigeria, and then earning an MTech at the Federal University of Technology Minna, my pursuit of knowledge has been relentless. Currently, I am immersed in the world of artificial intelligence as a PhD candidate and Graduate Teaching Assistant at Imperial, wearing multiple hats from demystifying the magic of calculus to exploring the fascinating realm of AI.

My research as a PhD student is focused on the creation of an AI multimodal humour style recognition model. In an era when mental health issues are on the rise, having a system that can automatically detect the complex nature of our jokes and comprehend how they affect our wellbeing and relationships is an important step towards encouraging better mental health. This undertaking is more than just a technological problem; it marks a significant step forward in understanding and improving our daily wellbeing and social relationships. (more…)

Sanjeevani Panditharatne, Research Postgraduate, Department of Physics

“Climate change is the greatest challenge facing this generation, and a deeper understanding of it is vital for our planet’s future.”

After graduating with a degree in Chemical Physics from the University of Bristol, I started a PhD in the Space and Atmospheric Physics research group, as I’m determined to work in the field. Climate change is the greatest challenge facing this generation, and a deeper understanding of it is vital for our planet’s future.

My research is focused on the Earth’s Radiation Budget, the difference between incoming radiation from the sun and the loss of energy to space through the reflection of solar radiation or the emission of thermal radiation – the kind of radiation that keeps us warm. Because of human activities, more thermal radiation is being trapped in our atmosphere, leading to a rise in the average global surface temperature. Models suggest that around half of the thermal radiation reaching the top of our atmosphere is in a region called the far-infrared.


Eleonora Moratto, Research Postgraduate, Department of Life Sciences

“Imperial has been an incredibly supportive environment for both my scientific and artistic pursuits. The framework here has allowed me to thrive and grow in both areas.”

I am currently pursuing my PhD in the Department of Life Sciences at Imperial. I have been a part of the Imperial community for several years, having completed my Bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences here. During my undergraduate studies, I became captivated by the world of fungi and its role in plant evolution. This fascination led me to pursue two MRes degrees, one in Molecular Plant and Microbial Sciences and the other in Molecular and Cellular Biosciences.

My research as a PhD student is focused on plant-pathogen interactions. I am investigating the impact of electric fields on these interactions. With the world’s growing population and the challenges of climate change, food production needs to be increased. However, pathogens and pests pose a major threat to crops. I am exploring alternative ways to combat these threats, without resorting to chemical pesticides. My research is focused on a tropical pathogen called Phytophthora palmivora, which is responsible for damaging crops such as cocoa and oil palm. I am studying how this pathogen responds to electric fields and whether this response can be exploited to keep it away from plant roots.


Arianna Olivelli, Research Postgraduate, Earth Science and Engineering

Arianna Olivelli

“At Imperial I found fantastic laboratory facilities and a thriving research environment, where excellence and integrity are at the core of everything we do.”

As a child I was fascinated by space and planets and my dream was to become an astronaut. However, as it is often the case, perceptions changed, and by the time I had to enrol at university I realised I cared more about our own home planet than what surrounded it.

I studied Geology at the University of Milan – Bicocca, in Italy, and during my second year I had a fantastic opportunity to attend a marine ecology workshop in the Maldives, where the university has a laboratory outpost. It did not take me long at all to realise I wanted to dedicate my career to studying and protecting the ocean.


Angela Arkandhi, Taught Postgraduate, Business School

Angela Arkandhi

“Being at Imperial has opened doors to many new opportunities and experiences that I believed were impossible.”

Back in 2021, in between finishing pharmacy school and getting into my apothecary program, I found an interest in public health, specifically in the area of environmental health. My interest and passion intensified after spending a year interning at different pharma jobs (pharmacy, community clinic, hospital, and industry) because through that experience I saw how the environment is being severely damaged and affected by healthcare practices. I was motivated to build a better healthcare system for Indonesia by initiating sustainable healthcare ideas, for example encouraging proper medical waste management, reducing energy consumption, and increasing awareness of the impact of climate change on health. Seeing Health and Environment listed as one of the modules for the International Health Management MSc was what led me to Imperial College Business School.


Adlina Zahra, Taught Postgraduate, National Heart and Lung Institute

“By being given this chance to study at Imperial, hopefully I can achieve my dream of preventing death caused by cardiovascular disease”.

I am an Indonesian medical doctor interested in cardiovascular disease prevention. I worked as a GP for three years in Indonesia and was a volunteer doctor in a floating hospital in a remote area of Indonesia (South Borneo). Before starting my Cardiovascular and Respiratory Healthcare MSc at Imperial, I worked on the front line during COVID-19 dealing with this challenging disease, particularly in the second wave. As a doctor, I dealt with hospital overcapacity every day and it was overwhelming to announce people’s deaths on each shift.

It’s so important to prevent a catastrophic event as early as possible. The COVID-19 era has highlighted that people with no chronic diseases or comorbidity, especially cardiovascular disease, survive stronger compared to those who have these diseases. This is the main reason why I chose to study at Imperial, because the course offers complete management of cardiovascular disease from prevention until rehabilitation, complete with innovation and technology involvement as well as its implementation on an individual and population level.


Chung Yan (Crystal) Fu, Undergraduate, Department of Earth Science and Engineering

Chung Yan (Crystal) Fu, Undergraduate, Department of Earth Science and Engineering

“I love sharing science and watching people’s eyes widen in wonder as they come to appreciate the amazing ways in which nature works all around us.”

Whenever I get asked what I study, I brace myself for the two most common types of reaction: the “Geology? Isn’t that just colouring in?” and the “I thought Imperial only offers STEM degrees!” Despite often being discounted and overlooked, geology is an important science that underpins every aspect of our lives. From the soils that grow our food and the mines that produce metal for our phones and cars, to the mitigation of natural hazards and the development of renewable energy to aid the green transition, I have enjoyed learning different applications of geology that shape and improve our society.

At Imperial, I am never short of opportunities to put the knowledge and skills I gained into practice, most notably on field trips. Whether it is visiting quarries in Lake District, fossil hunting in Wales, examining folds in Scotland, or investigating volcanism in Santorini, I always have a great time observing and interpreting different environments, piecing together the clues to solve an intricate puzzle presented by Mother Nature.


Jasmine Chan, Disabilities Officer and Undergraduate, Department of Chemistry

“As a student with a hidden disability, I have felt part of a community I never knew existed at Imperial.”

I am one of the nine Liberation and Community Officers at Imperial College Union who support marginalised minority groups at Imperial. As the Disabilities Officer, I represent the disabled student community at Imperial and lead the Disabilities Network. Within this network, I try to foster a safe space for students who identify with a disability where they can feel comfortable engaging with other members of the network.

As the chair of the network, I am responsible for pushing for positive experiences for disabled students at Imperial. I work closely with the Disability Advisory Service, including Departmental Disability Officers, to fight for disabled student rights by raising issues from students to the Union and to the College. Additionally, I collaborate with the ABLE network, which supports staff with disabilities, to collect feedback from disabled staff members at Imperial.


Shyam Patel, Undergraduate, Department of Chemistry

Shyam Patel

“The best volunteering experience I’ve done is the Great Exhibition Road Festival – I’ve signed up again this year” 

I am a third year Chemistry student here at Imperial. Chemistry was always my biggest passion, and it was an easy choice when deciding what degree program to do, and what better place to do it than Imperial?  

Chemistry is vast, scary, and beautiful all at the same time. It incorporates so many aspects of modern-day life – from medicine to agriculture – and it isn’t just limited to “chemicals”. It can be used in things like fireworks, cosmetics and cooking, and it’s that diversity that is so appealing to me.   

Currently, I am on the committee of the Chemistry Society and as the first-year representative I work to help ease the first years into university life. I am also on the SwiftSoc committee (I couldn’t write a piece on myself and not mention Taylor Swift…), where a bunch of us swifties come together and just talk about the biggest artist of our generation. I am also part of Outreach, where I try to inspire younger students to get into STEM careers.