Panel discussion: Experiences of getting to the top in academia

Date: Friday, June 17th
Time: lunchtime (12pm)
Location: Whitechapel Lecture Theatre

As part of the QMUL Gradfest, we are inviting four panel members from academia telling us about their ways to the top.

  • Elizabeth Kuipers: Professor of Psychology at King’s College London. She received a lifetime achievement award from Women in Science and Engineering in 2013.
  • Valerie Gibson: Head of the High Energy Physics Research Group in the Cavendish, University of Cambridge. She is a champion of Women in Science and spearheaded the Cavendish Laboratory’s success at achieving an Athena SWAN Gold award in 2014.
  • Liz Sockett: Professor at the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, University of Nottingham.
  • Eva Sorensen: Professor of Chemical Engineering at UCL where she works on Fluid Separations. She is a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers, as well as a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and was awarded the Exxon Mobil Award for Excellence in Teaching by the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2013.
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27th Jan 2013: Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable Science Writing Workshop

Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable

OBR’s mission is to engage our academic and industry communities on-campus to foster a conversation about the health care and life sciences industry. OBR seeks to create a global network of academic innovators from across disciplines, to connect them with each other and the industry resources necessary to move ideas forward.

WISE@QMUL is co-hosting the Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable (OBR) London Chapter‘s Science Writing Workshop with Dr Lisa Melton, Senior News Editor at Nature Biotechnology, entitled “Beyond Writing Well: How to Become a Science Communicator”.

There are only 50 places 100 places* for this free evening workshop, and registration is open to all OBR members, not just QMUL research students/staff, so register immediately: http://www.oxbridgebiotech.com/events/beyond-writing-well-become-science-communicator/.

*The first set of tickets sold out so quickly we had to extend our booking to both Blomeley Rooms in order to provide 50 more places. That’s how much we care about you all! :)

You must be an OBR member to attend, so don’t forget to sign up for free membership here: http://www.oxbridgebiotech.com/join.

If you still haven’t clicked the above links, here are three reasons why you really should have by now:
  1. You get to hear from Lisa, an inspiring speaker with a wealth of practical advice to share about science communication.
  2. You may be recruited to be a voluntary author for the OBR Review, a top class biotech blog with over 10,000 views per month.
  3. You can identify your weaknesses in science writing and increase your chances of winning £500 cash in OBR’s 2014 Science Writing Competition.

The workshop will be followed by complimentary drinks and refreshments (sponsored by WISE@QMUL), so that you can mingle with the rest of the participants as well as Lisa, the OBR London Chapter team and the WISE@QMUL committee.

OBR flier: Writing workshop

When: Mon 27th Jan 2014, registration starts 6:30 pm, workshop starts promptly at 7 pm
Where: Blomeley Room 2, G/F, Queen Mary Students’ Union Hub, Mile End Campus, E1 4NT
Map: QMUL Mile End Campus Map (Building 34)

Closest tube stations: Stepney Green/Mile End
Bus routes: 25/205

Detailed directions:
It is extremely important that you read the campus map. The entrance to the QM Students’ Union Hub is NOT on Mile End Rd. Blomeley Room 2 will be clearly signposted once you enter the building.

  • If coming from Stepney Green Station, turn left as you come out of the station. Walk down Mile End Rd, crossing Bancroft Rd before entering the campus via the gates at the Clock Tower. Follow the path to the right of Queens’ Building (big, old building) and at the end of the path turn right and right again. You should now have the Library (you can’t miss this) on your left , and if you now look back towards Mile End Rd, the building straight ahead is the Students’ Union Hub.
  • If coming from Mile End Station, cross Mile End Rd when you come out of the station then turn left. Cross the road towards the overpass and walk down Mile End Rd, passing The New Globe pub and the canal before entering the campus. Walk around the first building on your left as you enter the campus (ArtsOne), and continue walking westwards (away from Mile End Station), passing the Law Building and ArtsTwo on your left and a cemetery on your right (no joke!). You will soon get to a circular building (Ground Café). Follow the path around it and you will see the Students’ Union Hub ahead of you.
  • If taking buses 25 or 205, get off at the stop called “Queen Mary, University of London”, enter the campus via the gates at the Clock Tower and follow the above directions for walking from Stepney Green Station.
  • Email wiseqmul@gmail.com if you need any further instructions.

Travel advice:
The District and Hammersmith & City lines get extremely crowded at rush hour, so please allow yourself 15 minutes more than expected to get to QMUL.

Finally, please sign up for our free membership to receive the latest news on upcoming WISE@QMUL events.

Speaker:

  • Lisa Melton obtained her PhD at the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina, and did her postdoctoral work at the National Institutes for Medical Research, in London where she investigated thymic differentiation. She then took a science writer’s position at the Wellcome Trust and later the Novartis Foundation, contributing to NatureScientific AmericanNew Scientist and the Times among others. She joined Nature Biotechnology in 2008. — Biography from Nature Biotechnology

First female Cambridge Professor in Engineering set to become first female President of Royal Academy of Engineering

Prof Dame Ann Dowling FREng FRS, world-renowned expert in combustion and acoustics, became the first ever female professor in Engineering Department of the University of Cambridge back in 1998. A motivational figure for women in engineering, she was identified last year in the BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour Power List as one of the 100 most influential women in the country. 

Just last week, the Council of the Royal Academy of Engineering has nominated Dame Ann as its Presidential candidate for election by Fellows at their September 2014 AGM. Upon election by the Fellowship, she will become the Academy’s first female President and serve a term of five years.

“I am honoured to be nominated for election as President of the UK’s national academy of engineering at a crucial time when it is generally acknowledged that many more engineers will be required to help the country benefit from the knowledge economy of the future. The world faces some enormous challenges, including clean energy, resilient infrastructure, water and food supply, and engineers have a crucial role in addressing these issues.”
— Professor Dame Ann Dowling, January 2014

Dame Ann started her career as a pure mathematician, but went on to study her PhD in engineering acoustics to pursue her love of applied mathematics. Her research has helped to develop quieter aircraft and vehicles.

During her interview for The Life Scientific, Dame Ann revealed that she had yearned to fly as a child and that was what encouraged her to become an engineer. A simple dream can be enough to inspire any child to achieve extraordinary things in life; we must take steps towards a society where all children are given the opportunity to follow their dreams, regardless of their gender or background.

For those of you out there who are still hesitant about studying engineering, here’s a little gem from Dame Ann.

“Science has only happened because engineering is enabling it.”
— Professor Dame Ann Dowling, The Life Scientific, August 2012

Dame Ann is encouraging our scientific and engineering researchers to work together for our future generations. Girls and boys, this will be your generation next—what is your dream?

Read the official press release from the Royal Academy of Engineering

Listen to Prof Dame Ann Dowling’s interview with Prof Jim Al-Khalili for The Life Scientific

This article was written by Nishtha Chopra, our new Publicity Officer, and edited by Sybil Wong, Secretary.

WISE@QMUL video discussion: “Why we have too few women leaders”

On 22nd May 2013, WISE@QMUL hosted a screening and discussion of Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s TED talk: “Why we have too few women leaders”.

In this talk, Sheryl looks at why a smaller percentage of women than men reach the top of their professions, and offers three powerful pieces of advice to women aiming for leadership.

The event was really well attended by junior and senior academics; great to see so many people there discussing an important issue!

19th May 2010: Coffee with Prof Dame Julia Higgins

Tired of marking exam scripts? Writing up getting you down? Summer is finally arriving, but you’re stuck in the lab?

Take a break with WISE@QMUL. We are incredibly proud to announce that Prof Dame Julia Higgins is going to join us for “a coffee and a chat” this Wednesday at 16:30 in the Hub.

Being a very successful scientist and named by the Guardian as a “Grand Dame of Science”, Dame Julia will guide us through what choices determined her career and success. She is a very good speaker and has increasingly rare views on how to succeed in science:

“I’ve made it absolutely clear that I’ve got a personal life, I want to be with my partner, and that’s good for my brain.” – Guardian, April 2009

Prof Dame Julia Higgins was the Principal of the Faculty of Engineering at Imperial College and the Foreign Secretary and Vice President of the Royal Society until 2006/2007. She has been made DBE (Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in 2000 and Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur by the Government of France in 2004. Her list of honours and awards is extremely vast and involves positions such as National Gallery (as a trustee), membership of the Chemistry panel for the 2000 Research Assessment Exercise, as well as countless advisory panels and journal editorial boards. She was also chair of the Athena Project and a champion of women in science and engineering. Her research explores boundaries between engineering and materials chemistry and mainly focuses on the study of polymeric mixtures through neutron scattering techniques.

Everyone is welcome. Coffee, tea, and nibbles are on us!

To read more about Dame Julia Higgins, see Ingenia and the Guardian.

12th October 2009: Prof Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell

Prof Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell will be speaking at 4pm on 12th October in the SCR Bar in Queen’s Building.

Short bio:

The Oppenheimer prize, the Michelson medal, the Tinsley prize and the Magellanic Premium have been awarded to Prof Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell by learned bodies in the US and the UK’s Royal Astronomical Society has presented her with the Herschel Medal. UK and US universities have conferred honorary doctorates on her, and she holds an Honorary Fellowship in New Hall, Cambridge. She was made a CBE in 1999 and that year also won the Edinburgh Medal for services to science and society. She became an FRS in 2003, and FRSE in 2004 and was elected a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences in 2005. In 2007 she was made a DBE.