What is your current Job Title or Role?
Coastal Scientist (PhD candidate)
What advice would you have for young women who are interested in a STEM career or job?
Find what subject interests you and pursue it. If multiple subjects or aspects of STEM excite you then read about both and perhaps you will be able to apply knowledge from one to another. Some of the methods I have found most useful in my research have come from other fields.
How did you get to where you are today?
I took a bumpy road towards my PhD. I left university during my first go at an undergraduate degree, working outside of academia for a period after realising the subject I originally chose was not for me. The second time around I prioritised my interests far more, which worked out much better. I was interested in the ocean and coastal environment, but didn't know that it would be my career until I was midway through my masters. I used a Masters in Research as a way to test the waters of academia and realised I wanted to pursue a scientific career, leading me to my PhD.
What do you do on a daily basis in your work?
I spend a lot of time on the computer! I mainly use computers to make models of the coastal and shelf sea environment. I model the way dynamic processes such as tides and waves interact to move sand, influencing coastal erosion and sediment transport across the South West. When I am not modelling I help out on our long term coastal monitoring fieldwork, so you might see us walking up and down the beach with our survey equipment!
Who or what inspired you to get into STEM?
Growing up by the coast in Scotland, and staying near the sea throughout my life made me want to learn more about the physical processes affecting this environment. While at school I loved the change in perspective given when I learned the physics behind something we might see everyday, and this continues to inspire me when I explore our coast today.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
Learning how processes in the coastal environment shape our coast, and working with world leading researchers on the topic.
What do you like to do outside work?
I am co-founder of a charity supporting the transgender and non-binary community called Not Alone. I am a keen coastal runner, cycle tourer and enjoy spending time in Plymouth Sound on our small powerboat.