Melissa Pacey completed her Nuffield Research Placement in 2010 at the University of Nottingham. She graduated from Nottingham Trent University last year with a degree in Biomedical Sciences.
What was your project about?
For my project, I was given the opportunity to undertake a semi-independent project on Lichens, and their appearance in accordance to Nitrogen levels. I was to identify specific Lichen species (from a list of 9) which varied in sensitivity to the pollutant Nitrogen around several sites of interest and was to observe changes in these areas and to record my findings.
What is your current role?
Currently, I have graduated from Nottingham Trent University with a 2.1 in BSc Biomedical Sciences in 2015 which included a 1 year placement in a NHS laboratory and a 1 year long research project. The skills I learnt from the placement helped me to succeed in my studies and prospects. I am currently employed but not in the science field, although I continue to read many articles and papers on science research advances. I have also taken my learning of science and support secondary school children in their science learning and helped them to achieve high potential.
Did your Nuffield Research Placement have an effect on the choices that you made after finishing school/college/university?
I would say doing the project helped me to be more confident in my decision making and helped me to gain skills in all areas to make me more determine to pursue my dreams.
If you could give one piece of advice to Nuffield students about to start a placement what would it be?
Advice I would give a student would be to do not be afraid of trying something new. If you have a science passion then it helps you to understand aspects of science as a general and help you to gain confidence in all research data publications, but do in enjoy it – after all, it’s your future it will effect.
What would your advice be to young people thinking about a career in STEM?
If you want to take a STEM career path, the do not just look at one area. Explore all opportunities, there is always more than one road which interlink with others. Passion, Patience and Perseverance are never too far away – so enjoy it, after all it’s your passion.