I’m Rachel, a PhD student at Sheffield and one of your 2020 comms committee members for the BBSRC White Rose DTP. I joined the committee primarily to help gain more experience in social media management and develop my writing skills but I have really enjoyed the insights I’ve gained into other people’s work and really enjoy highlighting all your achievements!
Prior to joining UoS, I worked for 5 years as a Genomics Scientist at Tun Abdul Razak Research Centre (TARRC), developing molecular markers for Hevea brasiliensis (natural rubber) clonal variety confirmation to aid in field misidentification in Malaysia. This role really highlighted to me the fundamental necessity for global crop improvement efforts to meet food security targets, and directed me down my career path.
The focus of my PhD project is primarily to look into what underpins the virulence of Striga asiatica, a parasitic plant which devastates cereal crop yields in Central and Eastern Africa. I’ve found my research focus in the crop improvement/food sustainability field, and is something I’m very passionate about!
Alongside working with plants in my academic life, I also have an allotment which keeps me very busy on the weekends. I also enjoy running and somehow completed my 4th half marathon in the brilliant Sheffield half in 2019.
I’m looking forward to bringing lots of plant-focused content to the DTP blog, twitter and more in the future!