Hello Hello! 🙂
My name is Alisha and I am originally from India but born and raised in Dubai.
I recently moved to Cambridge from Birmingham to work with the Wellcome Sanger Institute and I couldn’t be more excited to be in a new city.
When not working with cancer cells, I enjoy going on tours of museums, watching ocean documentaries (despite being terrified of the deep sea!) and exploring new cuisines / restaurants.
Come have a chat if you want to learn more about Biology or ask me anything! 🙂
I would like to describe myself as a passionate, witty and friendly (biologically obsessed) human being.
When not in the lab, I love to do things like:
- Learn how to cook my favorite dishes! (Preferably something cheesy)
- Go on hikes to see nature
- Watching Formula 1 racing
- Discover new board games to play (My all time favourites: Cluedo & Ticket to Ride)
My pronouns are:
she / her
I am a research assistant at the Wellcome Sanger Institute in Cambridge.
My job means I get to work with genetically modified cancer cells to find out which genes are needed for cancer to grow and cause disease (Hint: CRISPR-Cas9 Gene Editing!)
My Typical Day:
I typically wake up at 7am, which gives me enough time to get dressed, have breakfast and dash to the bus stop for my bus at 8:25am.
I reach work just before 9am and head straight into the office to keep my things at my desk and check any emails. After this, we either have meetings or I head into the lab for experiments!
I have lunch at 12 with my work friends at the company cafeteria (we recently had bao buns and pizza being served) and the food is always so tasty.
After lunch, we all head back into either the lab or the office and chat about our projects, experiments and future work for the week.
Not long after that, it’s home time at 5pm! I reach home by 5:30 and sometimes take a nap if I am feeling tired or cook myself some dinner 🙂
What I'd do with the prize money:
Since the UK has so many incredible outreach programs, I would focus my interests for outreach on countries that don’t have the facilities we do.
I could use the money for:
- Volunteering with children abroad
- Supporting girls in STEM in third-world countries
- Medical work experience abroad in an underdeveloped country
Or I would:
- Donate £250 to the Wellcome Sanger’s engagement program – Wellcome Connecting Science. To encourage their efforts in making science fields accessible and informing students about the world of Science.
- Donate £250 to Women in Science and Engineering Society at The University of Birmingham. I was on the WISE committee during my Masters at UoB and they have won several awards for their West Midlands – Birmingham Outreach Sessions for young girls. I want to continue to support the society for as long as I can and give back to the experience they have provided me with.
I went to school in Dubai and attended the Cambridge International School, where I stayed for all 15 years of my initial education.
I then decided to move countries at the ripe age of 18. I was still young and scared to move abroad and away from family, but I knew deep-down that I needed to explore a different part of the world.
I was keen on going to London initially, but the bright and beautiful campus of the University of Birmingham blew me away and so I did my BSc in Biological Sciences and MRes in Cancer Sciences there.
ALevels: Biology, Chemistry, Maths, Psychology
Undergrad: BSc Biological Sciences
Masters: MRes Cancer Sciences
When I was still in school and in Dubai, I did multiple Internships – not even related to Biology! Here are some of them:
- Intern at Freight Systems: I worked under the Head of the Fine Arts Division to organise an Art Exhibition. This excited me as I was always very fond of the art world. I also got to visit the world renowned Christies Art Auction and Gallery – a win!
- Intern at Tribe Magazine: I organised fancy press releases and photo shoots for artists and local content creators in Dubai. I also managed their social media pages and posts.
- Intern at Medeor Hosptial: This one was when I was exploring entering Medicine for a short time. I interned under the Head of Nursing and observed their sample processing from labs. I didn’t really want to be a Doctor, but the experience was lovely!
Wellcome Sanger Institute, Cambridge
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Dog-Loving Cancer Researcher
What did you want to be after you left school?
Scientist, Artist and Food Blogger!
Were you ever in trouble at school?
Not really, but I did get caught sneaking snacks into class.
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
Definitely would have pursued Art! I love to paint
Who is your favourite singer or band?
Anything Frank Ocean or R&B.
What's your favourite food?
My moms home cooked South-Indian meals ;)