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Past Events

Click on the tabs below to view summaries of each of the events we have run since our launch in November 2016.

Our schedule of events for 2021 is listed on our Events page.

Immune Biomarkers in Personalising Treatments- 28 January 2021

The mini-symposium was held virtually using TEAMs platform and we had a good attendee of seniors and early career researchers. The event was organised and moderated by Dr Mali Eskandarpour, UCL Institute of Ophthalmology.

Substantial progress in molecular immunology, coupled with an increasing focus on translational research and an enthusiasm for personalised medicine, has resulted in a rapid expansion in the field of immune biomarkers in recent years. Through this event we heard from research pioneers in inflammatory diseases and malignancies and their approaches in applying immune biomarkers and translating findings into clinical use and challenges they faced with. 

Speakers:
13.00- 13.05 Welcome Introduction: Professor Hans Stauss, UCL Royal Free Hospital
13.05- 13.35 Professor Lucy Wedderburn UCL GOS Institute of Child Health, CLUSTER
13.35-14.05 Professor Martin Pule, UCL CI, founder of Autolus
14.05- 14.35 Doctor Kiran Nistala, VP Clinical Immunology, AstraZeneca.
14.35- 15.05 Professor Sergio Quezada, UCL CI, Co-founder of Achilles Therapeutics
15.05- 15.20 Panel Discussion

"The Personalised Medicine Domain plans to exploit UCL’s potential for stratified therapies, leading to the realisation of ‘precision medicine’ and ultimately truly personalised care." 

STEM Career Re-entry Funding For Early Career Researchers - 29 October 2018 

The UCL Personalised Medicine Domain Early Careers Network (ECN) hosted an afternoon dedicated to disseminating information on funding and fellowship opportunities for Science, Technology, Engineering and Medicine (STEM) postgraduates who have taken a career break.

The afternoon organized by Dr. Ghazi-Noori and Dr. Dan Kelberman was split into two sessions.  In the first session we were delighted to welcome speakers from the prestigious Wellcome Trust, the Chief Executive of the Daphne Jackson Trust and Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship advisor from The Royal Society. Speakers discussed Fellowships and funding specifically available to STEM scientists who have had a career break and would like an opportunity to return to science or need flexible working due to family or other reasons. The audience had the opportunity to ask questions of each speaker after each talk.

After a quick break to mingle and have tea and pastry, session two was started by the Trust Manager of the Daphne Jackson Trust speaking about how the Daphne Jackson Trust supports its Fellows. This was followed by a panel of scientists who have previously held Fellowships from the Daphne Jackson Trust, Wellcome Trust Career Re-entry Fellowship and Dorothy Hodgkins Fellowship from The Royal Society 'talking from the heart' of their experiences of their Fellowships.  The audience again had the opportunity to ask questions of the Fellows and the speakers.

Finally, the event attendees had the opportunity to network and take contact details from the speakers and Fellows.

Session 1: Welcome followed by three 15 minute talks from funding body speakers and questions after each speaker

  • Dr Katie Perry, Chief Executive, Daphne Jackson Trust
  • Dr Sharon James, Wellcome Trust Career Re-entry Fellowship
  • Dr Harriet Clarke. Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship

Session 2: Panel of Fellows and Advisors to share their experiences of Fellowships

  • Dr Helen Marsh, Trust Manager, Daphne Jackson Trust
  • Dr Paula Alexandre, Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkins Fellow 
  • Dr Jess Buxton,  Wellcome Trust Career Re-entry Fellow 
  • Dr. Caroline Taylor, Daphne Jackson Trust  Research Fellow and Wellcome Trust Research Fellow at University of Bristol

The event was well attended with the seminar room being full to capacity.  Attendees were very receptive of the speakers from the funding bodies, taking notes and engaging with the Q&A session. The second session was more interactive with attendees speaking about why they had come to the event and what they hoped to gain from it.  At the end of the event many attendees requested the slides from the speakers to be emailed to them. 

Feedback from all speakers has been incredibly positive, all saying they would be happy to do this again and that it was a good opportunity for them to meet their counterparts from the other funding bodies and that they had been contacted after the event from STEM scientists with a view to apply for Fellowships.

Talk like TED - 25 September 2018

The UCL Personalised Medicine Domain Early Careers Network (ECN) hosted a 90 minute 'Talk like TED' public speaking workshop by trainer and voice coach, Susie Ashfield, Speak2Impact, on Tuesday 25th September at the UCL Institute of Child Health. The event opened with introductions by Dr Chiara Bacchelli, Lead for Experimental & Personalised Medicine, UCL Personalised Medicine Domain, and Dr Amy Webster, the Chair of the Personalised Medicine ECN Committee about the Domain and the ECN Committee. Dr Rosie Gilbert, Personalised Medicine ECN Committee member and the event organiser introduced Susie with the following bio:

"Susie Ashfield is a voice-over artist and speech coach who trained at Rose Bruford Theatre School, and also worked in the City as an insurance broker, before becoming a full-time freelance trainer and coach. Her clients include the BBC, Sky, ITV1, Sony Pictures, Spotify and many more. She is able to utilise her unusual combination of acting skills and director-level business experience to help clients to control and optimise their body language and non-verbal communication techniques, structuring presentations for effect, and giving the kind of vocal empowerment needed to both succeed and be seen to succeed."

Susie then kicked off the workshop by asking the audience to share some examples of their favourite public speakers and why, then delegates discussed what they thought made these speakers appear effective. She then talked about the use of body language and voice in presentations (demonstrating key examples with wit and humour) and delegates watched clips of TED talk speakers to see how they used these to best effect, in order to convey their messages. Susie broke down the structure of a good TED talk into its component parts so attendees could really understand how a message could be delivered well. Finally, she imparted generic 'tools and tips' which delegates could take away and imbed in their specific disciplines. All in all it was a fun, interactive and engaging workshop, which Susie delivered with great energy and one which encouraged all to reflect and improve on their presentation style. 

Creativity in Personalised Medicine - 22 May 2018

The seminar was kindly opened by Professor Beales, who talked about the exciting launch of UCL institute of Precision Medicine and the research strategies that he is helping to coordinate in this area. 

In this half day Seminar which was organised and moderated by Dr Malihe Eskandarpour, attendees learnt that when research groups struggle to identify value and select novel ideas, different approaches could be used to encourage creativity. 

Dr Harvey described two contrasting approaches to enable researchers to overcome this issue: Applying creative synthesis model where building shared understanding helps already creative groups develop consensus around novel ideas or applying diverging consensus model which allows different understandings and ideas to persist in groups traditionally less engaged in creative work. 

Attendees also learnt from Professor Lord about different approaches in treating inflammatory diseases. Manipulating the immune system and applying regulatory cells for treating autoimmune diseases can lead to exciting new therapies and clinical and commercial success. These strategies have the potential to provide significant benefits to patients, and affect strategic shifts in the way healthcare is delivered. 

Finally, attendees heard from Professor Voit about the many and varied ongoing translational research projects at UCL and examples of the creative ways UCL employees are developing clinically relevant treatments for the pressing concerns in medicine today.

Programme:

Introduction; Professor Phil Beales
UCL ICH Genetics & Genomic Prog, Chair of the Personalised Medicine Domain

Dr Sarah Harvey, Keeping novel ideas alive: Overcoming the bias against novelty in groups
UCL School of Management, Faculty of Engineering Science

Professor Graham Lord Advanced Therapeutic Approaches to the Treatment of Autoimmunity
Director of NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, Department of Experimental Immunobiology, King's College London

Professor Thomas Voit, Developing Gene and Cell Therapies for Childhood Medicine
Director of NIHR GOSH, UCL Biomedical Research, Centre, UCL GOS Institute of Child Health

Patient and Public Engagement Workshop - 22 November 2017 

Patient and public engagement is increasingly important in research, and is critical to maximising the impact of your work. This workshop explored methods to effectively communicate research from leaders in public and patient engagement, and highlighted resources available at UCL to support you to develop your own engagement projects.

The workshop consisted of a collection of talks and interactive sessions by leaders in high-profile public engagement. Speakers included: 

Attendees heard the speakers tips for how to effectively communicate research to the public, and how to involve patients and the public in shaping their research.

Grant Writing and Networking - Ways to Success - 8 November 2017 

Grantsmanship is an art that many of us at the beginning of our scientific careers aspire to be better at. Competition for fellowships are fierce, and we all want to give our research ideas the best possible chance of success. Indeed, good writing will not make bad science fundable, but bad writing can kill good ideas.

The 'Grant Writing and Networking' workshop was attended by over 40 UCL early career researchers. Our speakers spoke openly about their experiences and gave unique insight into the funding process. The speakers were:

  • Tammy Kalber, EPSRC Early Career Fellow "My Experience of Getting an EPSRC fellowship"
  • Alison Wallace, Science Portfolio Advisor, Wellcome Trust "Funding Opportunities at Wellcome"
  • Andela Saric, Royal Society University Research Fellow "University Royal Society fellowship experience"
  • Michael Brown, Head of European Research and Innovation Office "Getting started and plugged into the European research and innovation landscape"
  • Charlene Perrier, UCL Research Finance Office "How to Cost and Submit your Proposal at UCL"
Early Career Researcher writing retreat - 23-25 August 2017 

In collaboration with EDEN

The writing retreat was open to up to 20 UCL early career researchers and consisted of structured writing sessions with some light touch facilitation. 

Attendees were encouraged to arrive with a clear writing objective, and the retreat provided an environment away from daily distractions such as email and an opportunity to focus solely on their writing, alongside peer ECRs doing the same.

Experience demonstrate that academic writing retreats increase and improve research output for researchers and institutions alike. For instance, several universities such as Sheffield and Queen Mary schedule regular on-campus writing retreats that are proving extremely popular. We believe that offering space and time for ECRs to focus on their writing could boost UCL's productivity in terms of publication as well as give an edge to ECRs for the rest of their career. 

Summer social - 27 July 2017 

The Personalised Medicine ECN summer social brought together researchers from across UCL who work in the field of personalised medicine. The event allowed researchers to find out more about the early careers network and to meet the committee members, and provided a platform to meet like-minded researchers from across UCL in a relaxed environment. A great night was had by all, and the seeds of several collaborations were planted! 

Resilience in academia - 17 May 2017 

Academia is tough. Being an early career researcher can be daunting, with lack of job security and progression, as well as an ever more competitive funding environment. Resilience is the ability to thrive in this challenging environment, allowing you to advance your career even when faced with setbacks and deal with whatever stresses you may encounter.

This Resilience in Academia event was open to all UCL early career researchers, and presented a collection of short talks by senior academics and other professionals. During the event, they shared their tips for a resilient academic career and told attendees, including PhD students and post-docs, you what they thought they should know. 

Speakers and links to their PowerPoint presentations (where available):

 

Launch - 7 November 2016

On Monday 7 November 2016 the UCL Personalised Medicine Domain Early Careers Network held its launch event at the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health. 

Eminent speakers, including Professor Sue Hill OBE (NHS Chief Scientific Officer for England, 100,000 Genomes Project), Professor Sir Munir Pirmohamed (Wolfson Centre for Personalised Medicine) and Professor Stephan Beck (Personal Genome Project UK) presented their work in personalised medicine, and gave an insight into the direction they believe the field is moving in.

Attendees also enjoyed presentations from a number of early career researchers and opportunities to network with colleagues.