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‘Doing a PhD at Hallam is life-changing’

Oana Voloaca

Oana Voloaca discovered a passion for research – and for Sheffield – while studying biomedical science at undergraduate level. Her PhD is looking for ways to aid early diagnosis of fatal cancers.

‘During my undergraduate degree I worked in Sheffield Hallam’s Biomolecular Sciences Research Centre as part of an eight-week studentship. The experience made me want to pursue science in the department, and I was lucky enough to be offered a PhD in cancer research.

‘My project focuses on mesothelioma, a cancer that is usually linked to asbestos exposure. I’m trying to develop a novel method of identifying asbestos fibres in samples, using mass spectrometry imaging. The project also aims to identify new emerging biomarkers of mesothelioma.

‘Being a PhD student at Sheffield Hallam is life-changing. The research community is one of my favourite aspects of it – people are continuously supporting you and pushing you to achieve the best. You get the chance to engage with people across different subjects, share your knowledge with the public and network with the best people in your field.

‘I’m not surprised that so many PhD students remain in Sheffield and the Hallam community after they graduate. I’ve been living here for a few years now, and it still surprises me – Sheffield has something to offer to everyone, combining music, art, nightlife, sports and green space. It’s definitely a student city.’

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