Associate Professor, Reproduction and Early Development, University of Leeds

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It’s possible to achieve things without doing things the traditional way - embrace and celebrate that.

Dr Niamh Forde

What do you do?

I’m really interested in understanding how the uterus works at a molecular level. This is so we can help people have babies, increase food production, and make sure offspring are healthy for life!

Why did you choose this field?

I remember thinking that I was not interested in science as a career during my undergrad (I thought it was interesting but really didn’t like pratical classes and wasn’t the best student). Then I got to do my own research project (looking at proteins that promote sperm maturation) and I loved it - the whole way scientific research was carried out and thought - yes this is what I want to do!

What do you look at and think, "I wish younger me would have known this was possible"?

Probably having confidence in myself to run my own group and trust what I’m doing is a good approach - not that I don’t get imposter syndrome (I do a lot!) but less than I used to. So yes, knowing to trust my instincts are probably a big thing.

Why do you love working in STEM?

I love two things - when I can help people do well and achieve what they want to and new data!! Honestly the sciencing part of the job is such a privilege I love trying to understand data and concepts.

Best advice for next generation?

It’s possible to achieve things without doing things the traditional way - embrace and celebrate that people do things differently and celebrate the diversity - it’s where new things and ideas come from!!

Inspo quote / fun fact / role model

I don’t really have one - my philosophy is try to be kind!

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