UCL News


Spotlight on Cassie Harley-Boyce

30 July 2014

This week the spotlight is on Cassie Harley-Boyce, Communications and Events Officer,

Cassie Harley-Boyce ucl.ac.uk/slms/vp-health/research-coordination" target="_self">SLMS Research Coordination Office, Office of the Vice-Provost (Health).

What is your role and what does it involve?

I manage a varied range of communications and events for the new UCL Research Domains.

UCL's schools, faculties and institutes etc. are quite complex and can sometimes lead to people working in silos. This is where the Research Domains come in as they cut across all these structures, connecting researchers from all corners of UCL and its partner organisations, and encouraging cross-disciplinary interaction and collaborations.

For example, the health of populations is influenced by a wide range of factors, so a key objective for many of my events and communications is to reach researchers from a variety of fields - such as law, health economics, geography, philosophy, ethics, anthropology, computer science, mathematics and the built environment - whose work has or could have a bearing on Populations and Lifelong Health research.

By drawing together expertise from across the disciplines, research is strengthened and, therefore, more likely to be turned into policy and make a real impact on people's lives.

The communications and events that I produce also promote UCL's research to potential funders, the media and policy makers.

How long have you been at UCL and what was your previous role?

I have worked at UCL for just more than five years. Starting as Events Assistant in the Corporate Events Team, I progressed to the role of Events Manager before moving to my current role in the Research Coordination Office.

Before UCL I worked at Leonard Cheshire Disability, where I organised a variety of fundraising events, which included anything from gala dinners with the Queen, to recruiting and supporting runners for the London Marathon.

What working achievement or initiative are you most proud of?

I recently managed the development of the new UCL Research Domains website. Coordinating the creation of a website from conception through to completion was completely new to me and I learnt a huge amount from working with Web and Mobile Services and the external designer, Studio Special.

I'm really pleased with the site so far and I'm now looking forward to developing it further, following user testing and feedback.

Tell us about a project you are working on now which is top of your to-do list?

I'm currently supporting the launch of the Populations & Lifelong Health Domain Early Careers Network. The network will help empower and support population health researchers in the early stages of their career by providing career development advice and a platform for mentoring and networking. We are holding a launch event on Wednesday 3 September.

What is your favourite album, film and novel?

Album: It has to be Madonna's Immaculate Collection as it just brings back so many childhood memories.

Film: It's a Wonderful Life. I've watched it every Christmas for as long as I can remember and I cry every time - pretty much all the way through.

Book: Atonement by Ian McEwan. I can't stand the film though.

What is your favourite joke (pre-watershed)?

A Tesco burger walks into a bar. "A pint please."

"I can't hear you," says the barman.

"Sorry," replies the burger. "I'm a little bit horse."

Who would be your dream dinner guests?

Queen Elizabeth I, Anne Boleyn, Jamie Oliver, Barack Obama, Kylie Minogue and Karl Marx.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Don't believe people when they tell you that school is 'The best time of your life'. It really isn't. Things get much more interesting, and fun.

What would it surprise people to know about you?

I used to do food hygiene inspections for a local council. I know that sounds dull, but I've seen things 'behind the scenes' in restaurants and kebab shops that you wouldn't believe.

I won't go into further detail, though, in case some of you are reading this while eating your lunch...

What is your favourite place?

The Umbrian hills in Italy with my husband (and a glass of local wine). Failing that, in front of the open fire in my Mum and Dad's house on Christmas Eve.