Researcher Profile : Ms Marion Blanchard
Ms Marion Blanchard, a French Masters student from Toulouse in Southwest France recently spent some time volunteering on the Brainwaves Project. Sounds like she really enjoyed the experience gained and the Irish culture.
We tested our interview skills on Marion and asked her about her time spent in Ireland.
What is your name and what are you studying?
My name is Marion Blanchard and I am studing a Masters in Agronomy, Ecology and Biology at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure Agronomique de Toulouse (ENSAT) in Toulouse, France.
What brings you to University College Cork?
I have done several interships throughout this past year in various research roles to acquire knowledge and experience. I came to Ireland in February, 2022 to join the Brainwaves team and to gain some experience with the native Irish plant, Duckweed.
What type of experience did you gain on the Brainwaves Project?
Throughout the three month internship here at UCC, I have been working with various strains of the duckweed plant, different wastestreams and flow systems. One such system was a 750 Litre system in a semi-outdoor enviroment that was designed to simulate the conditions found in an agricultural environment.
Did you have fun gaining all this experience ?
I enjoyed most of my time in the lab, where I was experimenting with different pH levels, light intensities, wastestream concentrations and duckweed strains. I have learned a lot about plant growth conditions, as well as how to carry out water analysis testing.
The team was very welcoming and were always there to teach me new skills and to show me the beautiful Irish countryside. During my time here I had the chance to discover the south and the west coast of Ireland with all its lovely towns and changing weather ! Highlight for me was the chance to encounter some Whales in West Cork !
Where to next ?
It has been great experience working on the Brainwaves project here in UCC and I am looking forward to one day seeing the results of this project in action. I’m off on a holiday next for some downtime and to explore the kingdom of Thailand!!