Blog posts

Dr Lindsay Dewa, Research Fellow in Public Health, School of Public Health

“We worked together with young people to conduct a mixed methods study to understand how COVID-19 lockdown has affected their mental health and how they are coping.” 

Woof! I start my day as I did before the UK lockdown began – with a stare from Baxter. Baxter – our border terrier – has really improved my wellbeing through lockdown. Keeping to our routine of walks, dinner and play has given me company through the lockdown, when it was not possible to see my partner, friends or family.
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Professor Waljit Dhillo, Professor of Endocrinology & Metabolism, Department of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction

“As clinically trained doctors, this was the one time when the country needed the NHS more than ever. I have never experienced anything like this in the quarter of a century since I qualified.”

I am an NIHR Research Professor in Endocrinology & Metabolism and Head of the Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology & Metabolism. In my current role, I have the privilege of treating patients in the NHS, teaching medical students and postgraduate students, and carrying out cuttingedge research. Every day is different and I couldn’t think of a more interesting and rewarding job – 26 years after qualifying as a doctor, I still love what I do!  (more…)

Hadijatou Sallah, Research Assistant, Department of Infectious Disease

“Our COVID-19 vaccine work has been an immense team effort and within six months our group has begun a first-in-human trial of a saRNA vaccine – a great achievement in itself.” 

I am motivated by a desire to have an impact on human health and reduce inequalities in global health. After graduating with a degree in Biomedical Science I did an internship at Imperial, where I worked on a project that assessed the role of the placenta in maternal antibody transfer and the impact of maternal pertussis immunisation in early-life immune responses.    (more…)

Dr Florent Seichepine, Research Associate, Department of Computing

“We have been offering our services of nanotechnology and electronic microscopy, assembling medical devices and our large medical grade 3D printing facility.” 

I joined the College after finishing my previous role in Japan where I was working on neuron carbon nanotube interfaces – my research focused on the use of micro and nanotechnology for electronic interface with biology. I joined the Hamlyn Centre four years ago as a post-doctoral fellow, and I’m now working as the Interim Head of Facilities.  (more…)

Thomas Barbera, Research Technician, Department of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction

“As the lockdown began, I ensured that the multitude of samples in our department were safe, meaning our liquid nitrogen tanks were filled and our -80 freezers were monitored.” 

I studied Biomedical Science at the University of Manchester and after graduating, I worked as a Laboratory Technician before joining Imperial. In my current role as a Research Technician, my main duties include aiding clinical trials alongside biobanking. Biobanking involves approaching outpatients attending clinics to manage their liver-based diseases, and asking them to donate extra samples to our biobank sample repository. These will then be used in research to investigate liver disease, pending approval from the Biobank Governance Committee. As well as working at Imperial, I am also completing my master’s in clinical research.   (more…)

Dr Dasha Nicholls, Clinical Reader in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Brain Sciences

“Since COVID-19 struck, I have worked as hard as ever, clinically and academically, but now it’s from home. The first task was getting all our existing research up and running again…”

I moved to Imperial in May 2018 after 23 years at Great Ormond Street Hospital as a trainee, lecturer and then Consultant and Joint Head of the National Feeding and Eating Disorders Service. Now as a Clinical Reader in Child Psychiatry, I spend part of my working week in Central and North West London NHS Trust’s eating disorders service for children and young people and various advisory roles for the NHS, and the rest of my week on research.   (more…)

Andy Pritchard, Photographer and Videographer, Faculty of Medicine

Celebrating our community during COVID-19

“Since COVID-19 began I’ve filmed, edited and distributed 40 videos about COVID-19 protection for frontline staff with Dr Iqbal Malik for the European Cardiology (ePCR) response to the pandemic – one video has over 100,000 YouTube views. 

Following a BA, an MA (Video), and an MSc (Medical Illustration – Photography and Video), I started working at St Mary’s Hospital as a Medical Photographer in 1994, and subsequently filled several audio-visual roles until my current post as Photographer and Video Producer within the Faculty of Medicine.  (more…)

Anique Varleigh, Head of Examinations and Assessment, Business School

Celebrating our community during COVID-19

“We have successfully moved 70 exams and 1,400 students from April to June into the digital exam world, ran numerous student training sessions, created demos and video for students and faculty.” 

I am the Head of Exams and Assessment at Imperial College Business School and Co-Chair of the Race Equality Charter‘s Self-Assessment Team. I joined the Business School in 2013 after leaving a similar role at a Royal Medical College where I worked for 14 years. Throughout my career, I have worked on process and procedure improvement projects such as moving examination applications online, to moving exams online here at Imperial. 

Before the pandemic, the Business School had been working on our biggest ‘bring your own device’ digital exam pilot using WISEflow. Myself and my colleague Emma Stoakes, our digital exam project lead, had been working on this big moment for the past 12 months… and then the pandemic hit!  (more…)

Samuel Phillips, Events Technical Manager, Catering Services

Celebrating our community during COVID-19

We have had to create new ways of replacing physical events with virtual ones. One example was to assist the Enterprise team with a highprofile pitch event that could no longer take place in person. 

After finishing my Materials degree at the Royal School of Mines I (almost literally) fell into a role working for the Campus Services Events Department over the summer of 2006. The rest, as they say, is history. As the Events Technical Manager, I offer audio visual support to any College event and oversee a team of casual technicians that keep College events running. We are the sole producer of live streaming video content to Imperial’s YouTube channel, with over 130,000 subscribers worldwide.  (more…)

Professor Molly Stevens, Professor of Biomedical Materials and Regenerative Medicine, Departments of Materials and Bioengineering

Celebrating our community during COVID-19

“In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, my research group has continued to work with determination to support the development of game-changing technology to address the urgent need for reliable, cost-effective and fast COVID-19 diagnostic tests.”

I am Professor of Biomedical Materials and Regenerative Medicine in the Departments of Materials and Bioengineering. I lead a dynamic multidisciplinary research group that develops innovative materials-based approaches to tackle healthcare challenges including disease diagnostics. We have previously developed a lateral flow immunoassay for fast detection of HIV p24 biomarker with sensitivity in the low femtomolar range, and our Ebola serological test has been validated in Uganda with 91 survivors. Our work on smartphone enabled diagnostics capitalises on the ubiquity and technical capabilities of mobile phones and networks to bring advanced technology to the point-of-care, connect patients to health centres and monitor epidemics. (more…)