Blog posts

Andrew Grieve, Senior Air Quality Analyst, School of Public Health

I’ve been able to combine my twin passions of air quality and digital technology to design and develop several air quality apps over the years.” 

I suffered from asthma as a child and always had a Ventolin inhaler in my pocket from primary school, so I was always interested in lungs and breathing and what would trigger an attack.  

I studied Environmental then Computer Science at Stirling University and was keen to pursue a career in science but ended up in the School of Public Health’s Environmental Research Group (ERG) somewhat by accident after I saw a job advertised in the back pages of New Scientist – which I picked up by chance in Tesco on South Clerk St in Edinburgh. I never imagined I’d end up living and working in London, but I feel incredibly lucky and grateful to have landed in ERG.  (more…)

Shiya Li, Research Postgraduate, Dyson School of Design Engineering

Within three months of starting, we launched Mensura Mask and started to provide free custom-fit mask CAD models to the public.” 

I am a final year PhD student at the Dyson School of Design Engineering, working to develop novel design methods to quickly and automatically create custom-fit Computer-Aided Design (CAD) models of facial wearable products. I started out looking at Continuous Positive Air Pressure (CPAP) mask for sleep apnoea patients but later refocused to PPE respirator masks due to COVID-19. Prior to joining Imperial, I studied aerospace engineering and worked extensively on 3D printing.   (more…)

Dr Yilun Xu, Research Associate, Department of Materials

One piece of advice I give to students is to try to separate your work and living spaces as much as possible.” 

I came to the UK to do my postgraduate study, choosing Imperial because it looked like some interesting things were being done here. I did my Master’s and PhD here and now I am conducting post-doctoral research within the Department of Materials. I also teach in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and am a postgraduate mentor to students in the department.  

Lockdown has affected both my teaching and research but in slightly different ways. Most of my research is computational based and to begin with, my colleagues and I had some issues carrying it out remotelyHowever, we have worked closely together and looked at new ways to collaborate remotely as well as new software we could use. We can now use our computers in the lab remotely from our homes so are able to continue our modelling work.   (more…)

Rebecca White, Teacher of English for Academic Purposes, Education Office

Celebrating Women at Imperial Week

Teacher of English for Academic Purposes, Education Office 

“A typical day for me might be teaching a course for doctoral students, such as Writing a Research Paper.” 

I’m a Teacher of English for Academic Purposes (EAP) specialising in academic Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and Medicine (STEMM) communication. I studied Linguistics as an undergraduate and Applied Linguistics as a postgraduate, focusing on academic vocabulary development.  

I’m originally from New Zealand and I found my way to London via Brussels, where I taught EAP courses for Science and Engineering students at the Université Libre de Bruxelles. While I was initially daunted (being, at the time, Humanities through-and-through), I soon grew to love working with scientists because of their curiosity and drive. Three years later, I was delighted to get a job at Imperial’s Centre for Academic English, where I could be part of a team of experts in STEMM communication.  (more…)

Dipa Gurung, MRes Programme Coordinator, Department of Chemistry

“I love working with academics that are experts in their field and supporting the next generation of some of the brightest minds in their careers.”

I work as the MRes Programme Coordinator in the Department of Chemistry, a position I had held for just over a month before we went into lockdown in March.

I joined Imperial five years ago to do my PhD in the Faculty of Medicine. I’d become interested in using ambient mass spectrometry imaging in breast cancer research and Professor Zoltan Takats who pioneered the technique worked at Imperial. When I completed my PhD, I worked in the faculty for a while as a research technician, but decided that academia was not for me. However, I really liked the College and supporting student research, so my new role was perfect. (more…)

Dr Hamed Haddadi, Reader in Human-Centred Systems, Dyson School of Design Engineering

I’m really grateful to all the colleagues putting in extra effort to limit the impact of the pandemic for our students and their research.”

I’m a researcher and an engineer with a deep interest in User-Centred Systems, Internet of Things, and Applied Machine Learning. I enjoy designing and building systems that enable better use of our digital footprint, while protecting our data privacy/security. I studied at UCL and Cambridge and have worked as an engineer/scientist at BT, Sony, Intel, AT&T, and Brave.   (more…)

Caryn Urbanczyk, Research Postgraduate, Departments of Bioengineering and Surgery & Cancer

I was awarded a President’s PhD Scholarship to pursue research in shoulder and spine biomechanics during rowing.” 

Before joining Imperial in 2017, I received my bachelor’s degree at the University of California San Diego, completed my Master’s at Duke University, and worked as a patent examiner for the US Patent and Trademark Office.      

I was awarded a President’s PhD Scholarship to pursue research in shoulder and spine biomechanics during rowing. My focus on performance assessment and mechanisms of injury saw me working with collegiate and national teams to improve biofeedback to athletes and coaches.  (more…)

Brijesh Roy, Seed Investment Manager, Enterprise

I think it is really important that people make time for more one-to-one calls as that is when you can build stronger relationships than big group meetings.” 

I help the College’s staff, student and alumni startup founders to raise investment by making investments from the College’s new £2 million Innovation Fund and introductions to angel and venture capital investors in the Imperial Startup Investor Network. 

Previously, I have worked in technology transfer as an investor in startups from universities across the UK, and many years ago completed a PhD in biochemistry. I was lucky to join the College in January and had six weeks to meet many new colleagues before the first UK lockdown was announced and our team began working from home. From the Startup team’s stately offices in South Kensington, via the Enterprise Lab’s trendy basement to running investment readiness courses in the glass high-rises at White City, I was lucky to share coffee with many of the people I now work with remotely.   (more…)

Meriame Berboucha, Research Postgraduate, Department of Physics

“We’re all in this together, and my supervisor at Imperial and here at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory have been so supportive.” 

I’m currently a Plasma Physics PhD student but I’m based at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, so being in quarantine in the US has been interesting. On top of that, I only just started my PhD at Imperial a few months ago ago! It’s not only weird tuning in to lectures at 2 AM, but not being able to meet other PhD students at Imperial has been a little hard.  (more…)

Dr Sally Makady, Industry Partnership Executive (Digital Transformation), Enterprise

“In my role as Programme Manager, I explore engagement with multiple governments in Asia and the Middle East whose populations are worst-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.” 

I’m a Life Sciences industry generalist with experience in creating new partnerships across industry as well as with emerging fields in technology and healthcare, such as digital health. I studied pharmacy as an undergraduate and neuroscience as a postgraduate student. 

I joined Imperial last January as an Industry Partnerships Executive in the Enterprise division, focusing on digital transformation. Shortly after, we headed into lockdown and Imperial, together with Professor Robin Shattock, co-founded the social enterprise VacEquity Global Health Ltd. to globally deliver the COVID-19 vaccine developed in his lab. My line managers kindly accepted my request to support VacEquity Global Health Ltd. in achieving its mission and as a result, I was seconded to Enterprise.  (more…)