Our Fellows, students and Emma members working on global health, climate change and social policy describe their work and how it can contribute to a better future: for us to learn the lessons of COVID-19 and to ensure we think about a more sustainable future.
My research interests centre on the immune system and ageing, with a particular focus on B cells. These are the subset of white blood cells that develop in bone marrow to produce antibodies, the molecules that neutralise infectious agents known as pathogens.
On 1 April 1989 The Lancet reported a patient whose dog was paying a lot of attention to a discoloured ‘mole’ on her leg. A biopsy showed it was a malignant melanoma, a skin cancer which, if left untreated, can be fatal. She has remained well ever since. Her dog saved her life.
I started working as an Interim Foundation Year Doctor, known as FiY1, on 27 April at Bedford Hospital, with the General Surgery team. Luckily, I had been placed with them in January so I knew the ropes a little, but the hospital had changed considerably during the pandemic and for the first few weeks I was on a steep learning curve.
Our podcast ‘Pager’ was was born on the back of a chance conversation in the summer of 2019 whilst we were both on the PRISE, an Emma research programme at Harvard.
My research examines the problems caused by miscommunication across the Anglican Communion.
As a fresher, I often felt uncomfortable going back to my room in South Court knowing that someone was sleeping rough nearby, or eating in the beautiful light-blue Hall while others outside did not have access to decent food.
Growing up in the American rustbelt, I was always captivated by the large empty mills that dotted the shoreline of my hometown, and that fascination gave rise to my academic interest in late-twentieth-century industrial collapse and its meanings for, and effects on, communities that experienced it.
When I arrived in Cambridge to study natural sciences in 2016, the Paris Agreement on climate change was not yet one year old. This seminal agreement introduced the commitment to limit global warming to 2°C and ushered in a rare feeling of hope around the world.
2020 is an interesting year to be writing about theatre.
My PhD focuses on understanding light-absorbing materials for use in solar panels. Most current solar panels’ efficiency – the ratio of energy out compared to the sun’s energy on the panel – is limited to less than 30 per cent. Increasing the number and variety of light-absorbing materials in solar panels could significantly overcome this limit.
This Lent term I spent time writing on the Anthropocene, a topic I was keen to engage with in view of the current climate crisis and the wealth of writing emerging from it.