Category: Uncategorized

Able@Imperial, Staff Network

Able Network. Able is open to all staff and PhD students with disabilities, and allies.

“Through our community we are changing the narrative of what it means to be disabled.”

Able is Imperial’s staff network which exists to provide community for disabled staff, PhD student and allies. They welcome all staff and PhD students who live with a disability and/or long-term condition, regardless of whether they identify as disabled or not.

Able is committed to raising the profile of disability awareness that focuses on the person’s ability and on addressing and removing the barriers that are disabling them – known as the social model of disability.

They act as a space for members to connect and support one another – through networking, events and an informal coffee session every Friday on Teams. (more…)

Kyle Greenland, Research Postgraduate, Department of Surgery and Cancer

Kyle Greenland

“Growing up in a rural area and being the first in my immediate family to pursue higher education, it has become my personal mission to inspire the next generation of STEM innovators.”

My journey at Imperial began in 2017 when I joined the inaugural cohort of the new Medical Biosciences course. This program opened my eyes to a wealth of biological disciplines and the urgent need for research in areas like cancer. Since then, you could say that I caught the Imperial bug as I never left and have remained at Imperial while studying for a Master’s in Cancer Biology and now for a PhD. My current research focuses on using nanomedicines to target cancer therapy to tumours so that toxic side effects from medicines, such as chemotherapy, are limited. (more…)

Rhea Samra, Sustainability Officer, Office of the Provost

Rhea Samra
“Sustainability Fortnight, the annual celebration of sustainability at the university started last week. This year, we’re excited to host a range of workshops, exhibits and seminars.”

I’m based in the central Sustainability function, working to support the delivery of the university’s Sustainability Strategy, and it’s been great to see the momentum build around sustainability over the past few years at the university.

I’m lucky to work with a wide range of colleagues at Imperial – from academic experts to help draft the upcoming Sustainable Business Travel Policy, to operational leads who attended our pilot staff climate literacy course. I also work with communications experts to help amplify the great work going around on campus, such as sustainable lab practices, such as closing fume cupboard sashes completely when not in use. This reduces their energy consumption by 40% or more. (more…)

Celebrating this year’s President’s Awards for Excellence winners


The President’s Awards for Excellence recognises the achievements of staff based on four award categories: Culture and Community, EducationResearch, and Societal Engagement. Among the winners for each specialist area, those who have made exceptional contributions are also awarded with the President’s Medal.


Sophie Pieters, Operations Officer, Institute of Global Health Innovation

“A degree is something I have always wanted, and I am so proud of myself for finally going for it in my thirties.” 

When I left high school, aged 18, it seemed that everyone around me had a clear vision of their careers and passions. I found myself with a lot of different interests but simply no real calling. I worked at a call centre, as a cleaner, a receptionist and a management assistant – all in the space of a few years. My wanderings were not confined to employment, and I decided to move from my home country of Belgium to London. Imperial was the first place I worked, and I was here for a few years in the role of executive assistant.

During the pandemic, I struggled with my mental health and felt like I was failing in life. When scrolling through LinkedIn and other social media, it seemed like everyone was doing incredible things or changing the world. I wished I had a special talent or a skill that could make a difference. Friends or colleagues would tell me I am organised and caring but I thought these talents to be boring and nothing special. When colleagues would ask me about my career journey, I always felt defensive and started with: “I only have a high school degree but here I am, working in London!”


Robert Sprigens, Product Portfolio Officer, Information and Communication Technologies

Robert Sprigens
“I think it’s important to be your true self at work. So if you’re part of the LGBT+ community, why not bring that to work?”

Part of LGBT+ History Month: Behind the lens at Imperial

Since finishing university, my career has been in project management, specialising in technology. I started out in the financial sector. After a few years, when the sector faced another financial crisis, I decided to find a happier environment and moved over to higher education in 2016. Since then I have worked for two universities in IT,  supporting the delivery of large-scale digital transformation activities. (more…)

Leigh Sims, Transformation Programme Manager and Testing Lead for COVID-19 Asymptomatic Test and Trace project, College Headquarters

“Step-by-step we have built the COVID-19 testing service so that people can keep safe while continuing to study and research.” 

I started working on the COVID-19 Asymptomatic Test and Trace project in August last year. After a successful pilot, the College needed to scale up from 50 tests a day to mass testing of 500 staff and students every day by the start of term. Initially, I was just helping to plan the work, but this quickly turned into designing the testing process. 

Increasing our testing ten-fold in five weeks was a real challenge, but the speed at which the team came together was quite special. We broke the project down into workstreams and refined what we were doing day by day. We focused on building a booking system, sourcing testing venues across campus, recruiting and training a testing workforce, and liaising with the lab team as all our swab analysis would be done in-house.  (more…)