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Inspiring the next generation of scientists

1 February 2016

Dr Lee Parry with 6th form students

A group of science students from St David’s Catholic Sixth Form College recently visited the European Cancer Stem Cell Institute in order to learn more about the important work being undertaken at the Institute, and to gain an insight into what a career in biomedical research could entail.

The visit was part of a final year undergraduate project which was set up to educate the students about the role of diet in cancer. The 12 students had already participated in several activities as part of the project, and Tuesday’s visit continued the project theme, with an interactive presentation by bowel cancer expert Dr Lee Parry, who demonstrated some of the cutting-edge equipment he uses in his research.

A general tour of the laboratory followed, where the students heard about Dr Joaquin de Navascues’ fascinating work with fruit flies, and were treated to a practical demonstration by Dr Catherine Hogan, whose work is helping to develop a greater understanding of the early stages of pancreatic cancer.

As well as tying in with the project, the tour also offered a valuable opportunity to introduce the students to the field of biomedical research and to monitor their awareness and attitudes to the sector.

Fiona Wyllie, Innovation and Engagement Officer at Cardiff University’s School of Biosciences, said

‘Prior to the visit, the young people involved in the project had little awareness of biomedical research and what it involves. This event was a great opportunity to introduce the students to this field of work in an interactive, informal setting, and to open their eyes to potential future career paths.

And who knows? Maybe it’s helped to inspire the next generation of biomedical researchers.’

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