“The opportunities [my PhD] offered have equipped me with an enduringly critical mind which enforces strong attention to detail in both the analysis of my own work as well as others. ”
What I have been doing since graduation
I am a Strategy Advisor for the Strategy Group at NHS England. In my current role I am a member of the programme team working on the Test Beds programme, a project outlined in the NHS Five Year Forward View. The programme aims to test combinations of innovations on a clearly identified clinical challenge to improve patient outcomes at the same or lower cost.
How my course benefited me
I enrolled on the Human Biology BSc at the University of Birmingham in 2005. Since then I have registered on two further courses; a PhD in 2008 and a healthcare leadership masters in 2014. All courses have benefited me greatly in different ways.
My first degree offered me the opportunity to identify an area of biology I was particularly interested in. This subsequently enabled me to select a PhD in that field – ‘fertility’ and then led me to apply for the NHS graduate management programme, which gave me the experience I needed for my current position. My current Masters is further supporting me to develop in my new career.
My PhD was awarded as a teaching assistantship for which I am extremely grateful. The opportunities this offered have equipped me with an enduringly critical mind which enforces strong attention to detail in both the analysis of my own work as well as others. Whilst my scholastic vein may be considered somewhat of a niche, the plethora of transferrable skills including excellent written English, confident communication and effective data analysis I have developed are universal and are essential in my subsequent roles.
My first year in Birmingham
One of the best years of my life, equally terrifying and exciting! I loved it so much I keep coming back.
How going to University benefitted me
Going to University gave me the opportunity to grow as an individual. It also provided me with a save environment to perfect all the life skills essential in the big bad world!
The Edgbaston Campus brings a real sense of community to the University. My favourite time of year is walking through campus in the summer when students are revising on the grass outside the Library, Old Joe and the Red Brick buildings glinting in the sun. Limited traffic and a tranquil campus work in harmony to create a beautiful centre for education.
Living in Birmingham
Living in Birmingham was amazing! I met some of my best lifelong friends and frequently visit to keep updated on new developments. I have found that over the years my ties with the University have grown stronger with each new course!
The student community is extremely supportive and I wouldn’t change my time at the University or any of the decisions I have made.
Student societies I took part in
I was a member of the Biosciences committee for 7 years (undergraduate and postgraduate). Over this time I organised a number of postgraduate social events including inductions, mentoring schemes and outreach events for school children at Birmingham Think Tank Science Museum.
My future aspirations
I hope to progress my career in the NHS. An organisation I am passionate about and hope to help through this difficult time.
My top tip
Take advantage of every opportunity.