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PhD Inspiration - Dr Anne Corcoran, The Babraham Institute
Posted on 9 Mar '18

PhD Inspiration - Dr Anne Corcoran, The Babraham Institute

Considering a PhD, but wondering what you'll actually get out of it? We've sat down with some of the UK's top academics to hear their experiences and thoughts on postgraduate study. Dr Anne Corcoran is currently Group Leader in Immunology at The Babraham Institute. Here she shares some advice for new students.


Video Transcript

Why should people do a PhD?

It's a tremendous privilege to do a project that you've owned entirely yourself. You know, to feel at the end of the day you've actually discovered something new. It might be something small, but it's something that nobody else has discovered. That's a tremendous achievement no matter what you do with your PhD.

What did you get out of doing a PhD?

I got a really fantastic experience of having the time to do a body of work which, you know, had its ups and downs but which was entirely mine which I was very proud of at the end. I learned a lot of perseverance because it was not an easy ride. I learned patience and I gained a huge amount of confidence in my own ability to do something to do any project, and carry on to its conclusion.

What was the biggest challenge during your PhD?

My sort of more personal challenge was that doing a PhD you have to give talks, and my PhD supervisor really supported us to give talks at international conferences, which was great training, but I found totally, totally terrifying. So, it took me a long time to get over that, but now it's fine.

What’s your top PhD tip?

My top PhD tip would be to look for a PhD in a subject that you're really excited about. So, think about what really excited you on your course. It might not be the easiest thing, but that will drive you through your PhD. Apply for several different PhD projects within that because that really hones down your thinking about what you'll be excited about.




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