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Nessa Carey splits her professional time between providing consultancy services to some of the UK’s leading research institutions, and training people around the world in how to create benefits for society from basic research.
How Many Careers Will You Have?
There’s an amazing range of careers open to well-trained researchers, and shifting between and within sectors is a great way of ensuring professional longevity and a whole raft of exciting opportunities. Nessa Carey will share her experiences and insights from working in diverse environments, from big pharma to freelance, and from academia to start-ups, with a healthy dose of public engagement and supporting research councils on the side.
Nessa Carey has a virology PhD from the University of Edinburgh and is a former Senior Lecturer in Molecular Biology at Imperial College, London. She worked in the biotech and pharmaceutical industry for thirteen years and now splits her professional time between providing consultancy services to some of the UK’s leading research institutions, and training people around the world in how to create benefits for society from basic research. She lives in Norfolk, is a Visiting Professor at Imperial College and a Royal Society Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of Oxford.
After leaving school and dropping out of a veterinary degree in Edinburgh, Nessa worked at the Metropolitan Police Forensic Science Lab in London and studied part-time. She then realised that she loved academic science and went off to do a PhD. At the University of Edinburgh. In the veterinary faculty.
After that, it was the academic route of post-doc, Lecturer and Senior Lecturer. But she tended to wander off on routes that intrigued her – degree in Immunology, PhD in Virology, post-doc in Human Genetics, academic position in Molecular Biology. Such wandering isn’t necessarily the best idea in academia, but the breadth of experience is really valued in industry. She spent 13 years in the biotech and pharmaceutical sector, but in 2014 decided to change career paths again, and went freelance.
Nessa also writes popular science books and is the author of The Epigenetics Revolution (2011); Junk DNA (2015); Hacking the Code of Life (2019).