Deniz Gursul completed her Nuffield Research Placement in 2012 in the Department of Biology and Biochemistry at the University of Bath. She studied Biomedical Sciences at the University of Oxford.
What was your project about?
I was investigating the effects of different drugs on the development of ectopic neural crest chromatophore cells in mutant zebrafish.
What was the highlight/best bit of your placement?
Seeing how real research was conducted in a real lab, and getting a chance to actually do it myself.
What was your least favourite part of the placement?
The waiting in between experiments for my zebrafish to grow before I could analyse them!
What path did you take after finishing your NRP and how has that led you to where you are today?
I applied for Biomedical Sciences at university, and then specialised in Neuroscience during my undergraduate degree. I had an interview to get into university and the interviewer seemed to be very interested in my NRP and asked me many questions about it – which was lucky as it kept the conversation on a topic that I knew lots about! I think the NRP really helped me during interviews and played a part in me getting an offer from Oxford!
What is your current role?
I have just finished my undergraduate studies and dependent on getting a 2.1, I will be starting a PhD in Neuroscience/Paediatrics at the University of Oxford.
If you could give one piece of advice to Nuffield students about to start a placement what would it be?
It doesn’t matter if the topic of your project isn’t necessarily exactly the same as what you end up going into (plans and opinions change!). The experience will still teach you about research and help you work out whether you enjoy it.