My name is Yulia Yancheva and I am currently a third-year
MPhys Physics student at the University of Manchester. The Physics course at
UoM is a combination of theoretical and mathematics subjects, programming, and
How is Physics Different at Uni?
One of the main differences between university and high
school is that at university, the degree is focused mainly on one topic, in my
case Physics. This allows students to gain a lot of subject-specific knowledge
in significant depth. For example, in Physics, we do not only learn different
subjects, but we also learn how to think like physicists. This allows us to
often know the answer to questions that we have not seen before just because we
have enough knowledge of the basic physics laws in the world that surrounds us.
Another major difference between high school and university
is that in university, students are mainly independent. This means that it is a
personal choice for each student how to organise their time and make sure they
are up to date with all new material. There are lectures, tutorials and
workshops that help us to organise our time but we do not have a teacher who
makes sure we have attended and learned the new material – it is our
responsibility to do that! Everybody tries to keep up with all the new lessons
because at the end of each semester we have exams where we can show what we
have learned during the semester.
Physics at Manchester
I have studied a very diverse range of subjects during my
university degree in Physics. For example, in my first year, I had a module on
astrophysics and cosmology during which I learned about stars, planets,
telescopes and the Universe in general. I also had a module on quantum physics
and relativity, which was taught by Prof Brian Cox. During this module, I
learned about time and space as scientific concepts as well as about black
holes and even various scientific paradoxes.
Apart from the theoretical subjects, I also spend a lot of
time in the experimental laboratory. For example, in my third year, I was
working with graphene – this is a material that was discovered by Professor Sir
Andre Geim and Professor Sir Kostya Novoselov at The University of Manchester
for which they were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2010. I spent four
weeks in which I was investigating the electrical properties of graphene and I
found the work very interesting and engaging – it felt like real research. Here
is a photo of myself doing a task that was required for this experiment – I was
handling ammonia and hence the safety goggles and the face mask.
At the University of Manchester, Physics students work in
pairs in the laboratory. We also have lab demonstrators who introduce us to the
experiments and help us if we get stuck. However, in third and fourth year,
most of the time students work with their lab partners without the
demonstrators being there all the time. This makes the lab experience unique –
there is a lot of brainstorming going on between lab partners and it almost
feels like solving a puzzle.
My name is Gabriele and I was born and raised in the marvellous lands of
Lithuania, but for the past 2 years I have been living in the UK. I am a second
year Materials Science and Engineering student at The University of Manchester.
Many people ask me what Materials Engineering is and why I choose this subject.
Well, I have always enjoyed Physics, Chemistry and Maths and I was searching
for a course combining all of them. Until, nanotechnologies and graphene popped
into my radar and without a second thought, I applied to the university where
graphene was found. As a teenager, I was always striving for challenges so studying a course with so many different fields (biomaterials, tissue
engineering, polymers, alloys, ceramics) was exactly what I was looking for.
Why I Like Being an Engineer
Engineering is the most male-dominated field in STEM; therefore, whenever
I tell people my degree, I receive stereotypical questions about
being a female in engineering. Engineering captivates me as I am in lectures
with world-class researchers and this inspires me to improve personally, contribute
to society using tools of engineering and make a difference. Being so
interested in the academic world, I asked my favourite lecturer if I could do a
summer project in his team. After my first year at university, I got an
internship at Manchester Institute of Biotechnology where I conducted research
on self-healing polymers, made from oxidised lactose.
Imagine getting a one-page long description of an experiment, where no
measurements, concentrations, catalysts are given and you have to make a final
product, which in theory, when pressure is applied, should be able to recover
the tears. I was working with extremely time-consuming and expensive products
and every small mistake could cost a lot of money but because of my hard work,
the results of this extremely challenging project surprised the PhD students
and raised eyebrows of post-doctorates. No one expected the first-year university
student to succeed and be able to contribute to the academic paper – but I did
Why I Joined a Society
Universities are famous for their range of different societies. As I was
interested in Aeronautical Engineering, I joined Flight Simulation society where
I soon became a part of the committee. During my time here I expanded my
knowledge by designing my own aircraft with some help from Aerospace Engineering
students and in my second year in the society, me and my teammate (we were the ‘strangest’
team, as I was the only female participating and he is a first-year student)
designed a vertical take-off and landing aircraft and were chosen to represent
the university at an aircraft designing and handling competition in the United
States of America.
It is such an amazing feeling to be surrounded by like-minded people who
are passionate about their field of studies and it has encouraged me to learn
more and participate in discussions about new concepts. In the beginning, it
was difficult to be a part of this society as I had no knowledge how an
aircraft works, but slowly I became equal to all other members and involved in
socials and events. This year, I taught first-year members how to
use flight simulators, shared my experience about ‘living conditions’ in the
simulator room and got to fly my aircraft in it with the full motion power – I
felt like I was a real-life pilot!
What Lies Ahead?
During my second year at university I found out that Rolls Royce
together with Target Jobs were conducting a competition for Female Undergraduate
of the Year. Over 800 applications were sent and only 20 students were invited
to attend an assessment centre in Rolls Royce. Proudly, I can say that I was
one of those females. They were 2 amazing days, filled with networking, getting
to know the company and finding out possibilities for after I graduate. One of
Rolls Royce’s goals is to have more senior female engineers and attract them to
the engineering world. This company conducts a wide range of projects where you
can put yourself in a position of a real engineer and what it feels like
working there and I really saw myself undertaking the challenges in a world-leading
company and who knows – maybe in a couple of years I will go back there and
lead a group of apprentices into the engineering world.
I cannot imagine studying another subject. Engineering
intrigues me every day with new technologies, new materials being invented, and
it gives me many different opportunities to improve.
Read more about engineering here:
My name is Gladys. I am doing my Master’s in
Advanced Computer Science at the University of Manchester. Growing up watching movies portraying
how scientists achieved some of their missions using various intelligent computer
applications made me fond of computer-related courses. That's why I did a BSc
degree in Computer Engineering. As the world is now technologically based and
computing is the foundation of so many advancements happening in this digital
era; my passion for computer science has been enhanced.
If someone asks me why I wanted
to study Computer Science at the University of Manchester; my answer would be that I wanted to
study this course at one of the best Universities in the UK and the world. With
enough lecturers who know their area of interest intensely, it has led to the
production of graduates/experts who are doing well in the computing industry
hence inspiring new applicants like me, to opt for UoM.
Why You Should Study Computer Science
Everyone at one point wants to be a problem solver and the most important aspect of computer
science is problem-solving! Most successful businessmen such as Bill Gates (founder
of Microsoft), the late Steve Jobs (founder of Apple), and Mark Zuckerberg (founder
of Facebook) are from the computer
science industry. As a computer science student, you will study the design,
development, and analysis of software and hardware used to solve problems in a
variety of business, scientific, and social contexts.
Here's some reasons why I think Computer Science is such an
- Computing and computer technology are part of just
about everything that touches our lives from the cars we drive, the movies we
watch, to the ways businesses and governments deal with us.
enables you to make the difference in the world as it drives innovation in sciences from impacting the
health industry, automation of the majority of business processes, and
enhancing our social life just to name few.
- Computing jobs are among the highest-paid and have
the highest job satisfaction.
The University of Manchester is the best place to highly consider as
it has state-of-the-art computer laboratories, experienced lecturers who
provide constant support whenever you need it, big libraries with about 4
million books, the list goes on! UoM is home to great scientists who
transformed the computing industry. Alan Turing, the pioneer of modern
computing and a great Mathematician; and Thomas Kilburn, who invented the world's first electronic stored-program
computer also known as "Manchester Baby". To honor them, the
Computer Science building is named after Kilburn and the school of Mathematics
building is named after Turing.
The computer science modules at all years of study are interesting and
very engaging preparing you for a prosperous career, with room for modifications/improvements
to keep up with the industry demand. I am confident in saying that this course
has everything one would wish for in this computing industry. There’s room to learn
modules such as software engineering where you will learn various programming
languages such as python and java; machine learning, artificial intelligence,
data science, etc. and you can do modules from other courses too in order to strengthen
your knowledge base.
The career path for computer science students is smooth as there is a
huge increase in demand for computer science professionals all over the world.
Some popular jobs are data scientists, software engineers (programmers and
developers), cybersecurity specialists, game designers and developers, IT
consultants, information system auditors, machine learning and artificial intelligence
experts and so many other opportunities.
The Alan Turing Building on UoM Campus
Is Computer Science for Me?
is the one question most of you desire to get answers when you are faced with
several options especially when it comes to University and degree selection.
It is not necessary to be certain
about what specialty in computer science you would like to follow. Just have
some passion for technology and you will find yourself in the richness of this
beautiful computing world.
Keep calm and join computer science. The
current and the future is digital!
To learn more about Computer Science at UoM, please visit: https://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/courses/2020/00560/bsc-computer-science/entry-requirements/
For more information about Computer Science careers visit: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-advice/what-can-i-do-with-my-degree/computer-science
My name is Jessica Traynor and I am a second year PhD
student at the University of Manchester. My research is based on producing a
localised drug delivery system for people suffering from endometriosis.
Endometriosis is a common gynaecological condition that affects roughly 10% of
women at reproductive age. Endometriosis occurs when lesions grow outside of
the uterus. These lesions can cause painful periods, pelvic pain and fatigue.
Although this disease is common, the treatment options are still limited. Women
are most likely to be given anti-inflammatory drugs, hormone-based therapies
(such as the pill or the coil) or undergo surgery to remove the lesions. These
treatment options are not ideal, especially surgery, as there is a high chance
the lesions will grow back.
My lab work is trying to find a way to deliver old and new
drugs directly onto the lesions. This will hopefully stop the lesions from
growing as well as reduce the side effects of these drugs!
My initial interest in pharmacology (the study of drugs)
began in sixth form. I knew that I was interested in science in general during
my GCSEs, so I picked biology, chemistry, physics and maths. I realised that
although Biology wasn’t my strongest subject, I found it the most interesting,
especially topics surrounding the human body and disease. I decided to look
into biomedical sciences for University, which I soon realised included a lot
of other topics, such as genetics, biochemistry and immunology. When I looked at
the list, I found pharmacology the most interesting subject as I wanted to
learn more about the production of drugs and treating diseases. I chose to
study pharmacology at Newcastle University.
In my final year at Newcastle I started my research project,
which was based on lithium action within the brain and how this can help treat
bipolar disorder. This made me realise that I loved the research environment; I
loved researching a topic where the answer was unknown.
Overall, my degree taught me a lot of research techniques
that can be brought into any research environment, of course, not all labs are
the same but University provided me with the confidence to learn and master
techniques that I’d never seen before!
I graduated from Newcastle in 2017 with a first class degree
in Pharmacology, and if I’m truly honest, I wasn’t entirely sure what to do
next! I knew I wanted to carry on in research, but I wasn’t certain on where or
on what topic. I spent the year researching PhD topics whilst working within an
NHS virology lab as a research assistant. I found this PhD online and thought
it was right up my street! Not only was it a PhD based on drug design/delivery
but it was also based around an under-researched disease that affects so many
women. I had a skype interview with the supervisors and then was put forward
My lab group consists of people from different backgrounds,
whether that is pharmacology, cancer research or pharmacy. We all work
alongside other groups to gain a better understanding of disease and its
treatment. We all use a variety of different techniques throughout our
research, so every day is different. Personally, I find my day is split between
lab work, writing papers/reviews, planning future studies and teaching!
After my PhD, I don’t have a set plan on what I want to do
next! My opinions may change throughout the years and I could learn new skills
that change my perception on what I want my career to be!
If you want to find out more about endometriosis and its
effects on women, the BBC have recently produced a popular article explaining
what endometriosis is and the idea of the ‘gender pain gap’ (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/stories-49925760/endometriosis-the-condition-that-can-take-over-seven-years-to-diagnose)
To learn more about the research that is happening in my
If you want more information about Biomedical
Sciences/Pharmacology you can find that here (https://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/courses/2020/00532/bsc-biomedical-sciences/)
and here (https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-advice/what-can-i-do-with-my-degree/pharmacology)
Something that sparked my interest in the treatment of
disease was a podcast that talks about medical history, you can give it a
listen if you’re interested, too! (https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/research/)
Hi, my name is Negin Kamyar and I am a 2nd
year PhD student at University of Manchester. I am doing my PhD in Biomedical
materials and I am a part of Bio-Active Materials group headed by Dr. Jonny
So, about my background - I did my bachelor’s
in biomedical engineering in Azad Tehran University. During my bachelor’s, I
worked on fabrication of skin patches for wound healing. As I was getting to
know my research interest more and more in the biomedical field, I became more passionate
to discover new things in my field. To further progress and improve in my field,
I decided to apply to University of Manchester to study my Master’s. I
successfully got accepted to study Biomaterials at University of Manchester and
I graduated with distinction. During my master’s project I worked on the fabrication
of three-dimensional (3-D) materials composed of polymers and two-dimensional
(2-D) materials for bone regeneration. Since I was very excited about my master’s
project, I decided to start my PhD in Biomedical Material and continue my
research with more passion and time. My research is focused on the fabrication
of 3-D bone implants which can be degraded over time so that the body’s new
tissue can replace the degraded implant. These materials can be used for bone
fractures and patients with osteoporosis.
So far, my PhD has been great. I published
one paper in the ACS applied nanomaterials journal and I also presented my work
to one of the biggest world conferences “Material Research Society (MRS)” in
Boston. Participation in this conference gave me the chance to meet a lot of
researchers around the world and learn new things in my field and share my
research with them. I am looking forward to new achievements and opportunities
during my PhD research.
When I was a child, I was always very keen on
studying medicine in the future due to having a strong feeling and passion for
helping people’s lives. My main inspiration in my life was my family who have always
supported me to follow my dreams, since I was a child, and still support me
today. While studying at school I was very enthusiastic about biomedical science
and my parents bought me many science related books which helped me to be sure that
it was what I wanted to do. I remember, when I was in the final year of high
school, I met one of our family friends, who was doing research on heart stents
and I had very long conversation with her about this field. After that day, I
started reading more about the different applications of biomedical devices and
I became more and more interested in inventing biomedical devices to improve
humans’ lives. So, my dream towards medicine always stayed in my mind, but its direction changed to a more
interesting and challenging field for me as biomedical engineer. During my
bachelor’s, I worked on the fabrication of skin patches for wound healing and I
presented my work in an international conference in Poland. One year after
getting my bachelor’s degree, I successfully collaborated in publishing an
academic book in Persian called “Nanomaterial in Biomedical Engineering” with
my supervisor. During my master’s at Manchester University, I found I was more
interested in the topic of bone implants because of current challenges in this
field. In my master’s project, I worked on the fabrication of a 3-D fibre-based
scaffold for potential bone regeneration which could be degraded over time.
Since I was fascinated by my Master’s project,
I decided to continue the topic for my PhD. So, I am currently a second year
PhD student and absolutely love my research with all its challenges and
adventures. My project is a multidisciplinary topic which focuses on the fabrication
of tissue scaffolds with different techniques. These scaffolds are 3-D structures
which are composed of polymers and two-dimensional materials which can mimic
the natural bone’s tissue. These 3-D scaffolds are integrated with biological
factors and cells to mimic the physiological environment. In the physiological
environment, these scaffolds can degrade over time and stimulate the formation
of new tissue. The main aim of this research is finding a new way to help
patients who are suffering from bone fractures and osteoporosis.
Now, I am almost midway through my PhD and I
still absolutely love my research. I find every day challenging and adventurous
for myself. I definitely can say that research is an unlimited area, that every
day I learn and discover new things in my field. Beside doing my research, I
also help other bachelor’s and master’s students in the lab with their projects
which makes me feel more excited about continuing my own research in my field to
a higher level. I have to say that that I am very thankful to all my parents’
support that gave me lots of opportunity to experience an amazing adventure in
Figure 1 3-D scaffold for bone
If you are interested in reading my
paper, please visit the website: https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acsanm.8b00938?af=R
If you are interest in finding more
information about the biomaterial and our group, please visit the websites: https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/jonny.blaker.html and https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/david.lewis-4.html
If you are interested in perusing
Materials sciences, please visit the website: http://www.materials.manchester.ac.uk/
We also have a school blog which
details life as a materials student and interviews a range of students and