Women in Science
Leanne grew up in New Zealand. After working various jobs, she did her BSc in nutrition, and then a PhD. She was awarded a fellowship to come to Oxford, to work in the area of human metabolism. She has worked in this field for the past 10 years, and finds the work rewarding.
© Women in Science
at the time of the interview- October 2014
Leanne is an Associate Professor of Diabetes and Metabolism, based in the Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism, within the Radcliffe Department of Medicine.
at the time of the interview – October 2014
Leanne grew up in New Zealand. At school she wasn’t very interested in science, leaving school early. She was keen on sport, and whilst doing a night school course on sports medicine, about nutrition and exercise physiology she became inspired to study nutrition.
find what you’re passionate about then you’re always going to stay through the thick and thin
After working in various jobs, Leanne did her BSc in nutrition. Then one of her lecturers encouraged her to do a PhD. Her PhD looked at dietary fat and using the composition of fatty acids as biomarkers. During this time she also taught, and helped to run laboratory courses.
Next Leanne applied for and was awarded a fellowship to come to Oxford, to work in another field in the field of physiology/metabolism, which she really enjoyed. Since then she has had another fellowship and she has obtained a project grant to do research with new methods, but which complements her current work. She has worked in this field for the past 10 years, and finds it rewarding. Leanne works long hours but this is her choice and she enjoys her work. She also leads the Athena SWAN initiative in the Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism.
Leanne says that she has sometimes lacked confidence in her ability. She was encouraged to apply for the title of Research Lecturer and recently for her current title Associate Professor. She finds it helpful to have a research assistant, because having help gives her more time to write papers and apply for funding. Leanne thinks that it is important that people have a passion for what they are doing, and that people are never too old to start a career in science. Nationality: White New Zealand/British.