PhD Public Health Nutrition, 2006
From Aberdeen to Award Winning Nutritionist
Your Time at Aberdeen
Why did you choose to study at Aberdeen?
Aberdeen University has a highly regarded reputation for public health and nutrition.
Why did you choose your particular course?
My first degree at Aberdeen was a BSc Health Sciences degree with honours in Nutrition. I was attracted to this course as it covered a wide variety of subjects related to public health, health research and epidemiology. It provided a great foundation for my career.
What did you most enjoy about your time at Aberdeen? Did you have any particularly memorable student experiences?
I really enjoyed the work placement at Aberdeen Foyer during my undergraduate degree which involved exploring low cost and nutritious food options. The practical experience of working in an organisation helped my confidence in applying the knowledge I was gaining in my degree.
If talking to a group of prospective students, what advice would you give them to help them make the most of their time at the University of Aberdeen?
Try out a variety of clubs and societies. There's so many to choose from and they are great for meeting like-minded people from outside your course.
If while at Aberdeen you benefited from a scholarship, what was the scholarship and what difference did it make to your time at Aberdeen?
I received an MRC Scholarship. This made a huge difference to my time at the university as it allowed me to focus on my learning and research.
Your Time After Aberdeen
What was the title of your first job after graduating from Aberdeen?
Research Officer in Health Policy and Management.
What did your first role involve?
Working on and writing up research on health policy. The projects included looking at the recruitment and retention of health care workers; nurses experiences of recruitment and migration from developing countries; and the social identity of hospital consultants as managers.
Who was your first employer?
Trinity College Dublin.
What is your current job title?
Freelance Nutrition Consultant.
What is your current role?
Nutrition research and communications, workplace wellness and individual nutrition consultations.
Please briefly describe the journey from your first job after graduating to where you are now.
My first job after graduating was in academia at Trinity College Dublin. I then got a job at the Women's Health Council, a government organisation in Dublin where I did reviews of evidence to inform policy. I was Senior Nutrition Scientist at the British Nutrition Foundation in London for four years before coming back into academia as a Senior Research Fellow at the Scottish Centre for Food Development and Innovation in Edinburgh. In 2016, I started my own nutrition consultancy business which is continuing to grow.
Was your degree at Aberdeen essential for getting to where you are now? If so, in what way?
Yes. It provided a fantastic learning experience and teaching from very talented and well respected academics in public health nutrition.
One Top Tip
Develop good networking skills. Get to know people working in your area, use social media effectively and build your professional profile.