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Lisa Nivison-Smith

NHMRC Research fellow & Scientia Lecturer, University of New South Wales

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STEM will always be in demand. Not only because there will always be new challenges to solve but because skills learned in STEM are essential for so many other professions.

WHAT DO YOU DO?

I am a researcher studying the eye disease, macular degeneration. I use sophisticated imaging technologies to find ways to identify those at most risk of going blind from this disease. This will allow us to intervene early and hopefully prevent unnecessary vision loss.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THIS FIELD?

My grandmother was a scientist and one of the first women to study chemistry and physics at Sydney University. She sparked my interest in science from a young age and was an amazing role model. I pursued a career in science to follow in her footsteps.

WHAT DO YOU LOOK AT & THINK, "I WISH YOUNGER ME WOULD HAVE KNOWN THIS WAS POSSIBLE?"

I currently collaborate with a group of bioengineers who are building a bionic eye implant. I wish I could go back to my younger self and tell her "You know what? One day you might be part of the group of scientists who will help blind people see again."

WHY DO YOU LOVE WORKING IN STEM?

STEM is challenging, fun and different. I look forward to the freedom of choosing how to address problems because most of the time, no-one knows the answer yet.

BEST ADVICE FOR NEXT GENERATION?

STEM will always be in demand. Not only because there will always be new challenges to solve but because skills learned in STEM are essential for so many other professions. My best advice to those pursuing STEM is to try and find others following or have followed that path and work together.

INSPO / FUN FACT

One child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world - Malala Yousafzai