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Meet our Placement Student at Aberystwyth University: Ms. Laurie Stevenson

21 Nov 2022
Laurie busy in the lab enjoying the practical side of the placement.

We are delighted to welcome Ms Laurie Stevenson to the Brainwaves team. We caught up with her recently and she told us all about her studies and how she became involved in the project.


I am doing a degree in Wildlife Conservation at Aberystwyth University and this placement came about rather by chance. I went to an agricultural college and discovered a love for ecology and then during my degree I became particularly interested in sustainable agriculture and innovations within producing food for a growing population such as vertical farming and hydroponic growing systems.

I was planning ahead to what I was going to do for my dissertation and emailed Dylan Gwynn-Jones about the work he was doing, and he offered me the opportunity to covert my degree to a 4 year one and undertake a year’s placement on the BRAINWAVES project. So far, I’ve worked on the placement remotely for just over two months doing desk-based work such as putting together a review of the latest papers on the various different focuses within duckweed-based research followed by a specific look into the research on duckweed and the impact of various light regimes on growth and nutrient uptake. I have now moved to in-person work in the labs for the last month and am really enjoying the practical side of the placement.  

I am looking forward to the rest of my placement and possibly the opportunity to visit University College Cork to see the research there. I am starting to think about the project I will undertake as part of my placement and I am currently looking into something surrounding measuring and manipulating protein content of duckweed with a view to its use in livestock feed. As well as being able to contribute to active scientific research and it being a great addition to my CV I am hoping learn what direction I want to go in after graduating and get an understanding of what a career in research is like.  

BRAINWAVES is funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Ireland Wales Cooperation Programme

BRAINWAVES, School of Biological Earth & Environmental Sciences, University College Cork, Distillery Fields, North Mall, Cork, Ireland , T23 TK30