We believe our Customers aka Our Tribe are the most awesome people out there changing the world through their passions of Science, Technology, Maths or Engineering.
This week’s #ChangeTheFace #FollowFriday shares a glimpse into the life of Sophie Arthur.
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Here is her story in her own words and why she is proud to be a Scientist, rocking our Black Scientist Tshirt with White writing as her personal favourite design.
Degree: Molecular and Cellular Biology
What subjects did you need to do at school for that?
I knew that I would have to study Biology, Chemistry and Maths at A-Level to do this degree. I love science hence why I am still doing it now.
But this was all a bit science heavy, so I thought I would break up the STEM a bit during my last years in school by studying another A-Level which was another one of my passions – languages – so I studied French too as sort of my ‘chill’ subject to get me thinking in a different way and breaking up the coursework and experiments with science. In fact, French was the A-Level that I got my highest grade in, but I still opted for science.
What do you currently do as a job?
I am heading into my final year as a PhD student. So I get all the perks of still being a student, but I basically have a normal job doing research in the lab.
It’s a great way to still cling onto student life before having to enter the real world of work. My research looks at stem cell metabolism and how it keeps my stem cells pluripotent; or keep them as stem cells, where we can hopefully apply this knowledge to create a better source of cells for future regenerative medicine applications.
I spent most of my days setting up and analysing experiments that I’ve done in the lab, but I am also a really enthusiastic science communication so I have a bit of a side hustle doing that through my social media and connecting what I do in the lab with the general public.
Who or what inspired you to become a Scientist?
This is going to be a really uninspiring answer, but I don’t have that one person or that one moment that made me realise I wanted to be a scientist.
Science was what I was good at at school and science was what I enjoyed most at school. So it was a natural progression for me. But I initially wanted to be a doctor because my naivety when I was younger was not aware that I could have a job as a scientist.
I thought the only science based career that I could have was being a doctor, but as my studies have progressed I have been introduced to so many different options. I still don’t feel I can call myself a scientist and still not sure that I want to continue being a scientist.
Not because I don’t like it because I love scientific research, but because I am now more aware of the opportunities out there that involve science and I’m still finding the right way for me. I guess the answer to your question is that science inspired me.
I love working out the intricate details of whats going on in your cells and then sharing that with anyone who will listen.
What excites you about your passion right now?
Science communication. I’m not sure if it’s because I am more aware of the online scicomm community now or because it has boomed recently.
I love sharing my science and other research across social media and my blog to inspire future scientists, to support other grad students and also to help the public feel more confident talking and learning about science, but I also love learning from the other science communicators out there.
It is really exciting to see this blossoming community that are breaking down big science stories and making science exciting for everyone, especially due to the whole science funding, science policies and public support vicious circle at the moment. Hopefully if we can get the public more interested in science, the funding situation will improve.
Plus I am absolutely loving science communication and all the exciting opportunities its bringing me.
What has been your greatest achievement to date scientifically?
I am currently writing up all the data I’ve collected during my PhD into a few different publications.
It might not sound like the most exciting achievement in the world but I am super proud of myself that I have generated all this new and exciting data by myself that is good enough to share with the rest of the scientific world. I also feel quite proud of the fact that I have been allowed to teach and mentor students in the lab and also that I have reached the stage where I can have full on conversations with my supervisors about where to take my research in my final year of PhD study and designing and troubleshooting experiments.
Little things I know. But science is all about celebrating the small wins!
Who are you most inspired by today?
I would have to say Sammantha Yammine aka @science.sam. She is one of these incredible science communicators I have gotten to know online and she inspires me every day! I love the way she shares her life as a neuroscience PhD researcher and I love her passion for sharing science with anyone that wants to listen to her.
How she manages to do all her PhD research with what is basically another full time in science communication and do it to such a high standard whilst also having a life outside of science is mind boggling to me! She works so incredible hard and is so passionate about everything she does and she should get the recognition she so thoroughly deserves.
But Sam’s passion and work inspires me every single day!
What do you see yourself doing in 10yrs time?
Honestly! I am really not sure!
I love being a researcher but I am really excited about this science communication adventure I have started.
So, I will either be a full time science communicator – hopefully the UK version of Science Sam, or in my dreams the level of Bill Nye – or I will still be in research and doing scicomm as my side hustle. I honestly don’t know and not sure I am ready to give up my research completely.
Only time will tell!
If you could could sum up being a Scientist in one sentence, what would it be?
One of the only careers in the world where you can make world-first discoveries! What could be more exciting than that?
Thanks Sophie for your answers! We love your passion and message and keep it up!
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