inaugural super-curricular community lecture

Excited and proud to welcome Oxford graduate & former student Kate for the first of our Community Lectures!

Yesterday evening we were delighted to launch the first in our series of Community Lectures that have been designed to provide a super-curricular opportunity for students, particularly those in 6th Form, who aspire to enter Higher education and pursue undergraduate study.

As the name suggests, these lectures are not only for our own students and an invitation was extended to students in other local Sixth Forms, and it was fantastic to see so many take advantage of our provision.

At the events, the students will benefit from experiencing a lecture from an expert in their field, a sample of University-level teaching, and an invaluable experience to build upon and utilise in University applications and interviews.

For this inaugural lecture it was our absolute pleasure to welcome back former UGS student and Oxford graduate Kate Hammond, who we were fortunate to have booked before she starts her PhD at Cambridge next month. 

The theme: Introduction to Mitophagy in Parkinson's was particularly highly beneficial to prospective Medics, Biologists and Chemists, but it was great to see students who aspire to study in a variety of other fields in attendance. 

The lecture was an inspiring insight into Kate's expertise on the pathology of Parkinson's Disease (PD) and her research into it. After a general introduction to the theories of PD, its Pathophysiology (the causes and consequences of the disease), how it develops, models of the disease, and the mechanics of how this is studied in the lab, Kate then delivered a fascinating presentation on her own specific field of research related to the contribution of the death of dopaminergic neurons to the development of the disease: Mitophagy Failure and how to alleviate the brake on Mitophagy, and how to enhance mitochondrial function in the PD model.

Kate also shared details of the papers that completely transformed the field in PD research, and on the multiple areas of research currently taking place on the heterogeneity of this complex disease, and how to address the fact that by the time most PD patients are diagnosed, 70-80% of the dopamine neurons are already lost.

It was a testimony to Kate's lecture that so many students were keen to ask questions afterwards, and were clearly inspired to pursue a clinical path of study.

With huge thanks to Kate for giving her time to support and inspire our own students and those from across the area, and to Miss Hammond for organising this exciting new programme of academic events. 

Please look out for advance notice of the next lecture that will take place next Half-Term: "Who's there?": an overview of ghosts in English literature and critical theory" with Mr Connell on Wednesday 29th November, all welcome!