I’m Scarlett Moloney. I am in the second year of my PhD in Exercise Physiology. More specifically, my research investigates the combined effect of air pollution and outdoor exercise on lung function. I began my PhD at the University of Suffolk in September 2021 following the completion of a degree in Sport and Exercise Science here.
I applied for the Inspiring Futures Fund to help cover the costs of going to an international conference, EuroPhysiology 2022 in Copenhagen. The purpose of going to an international conference was to get a chance to present my work to others in my field and to gain an insight into other specific areas of physiology that I may not have considered before. Given the scope of my research and the versatility of the topic to be applied to physiology, biomedical sciences, and toxicology for example, attending the conference and listening to various research presentations has helped me to develop a clearer picture of the research area I may want to explore in my future career.
Presenting at the conference will allow me to communicate my research to a wider audience that goes beyond those primarily interested in Exercise Science alone; accordingly, hearing the thoughts and questions towards my research from academics with different expertise and perspectives was very beneficial in encouraging me to be reflective about my work and help prepare me for responding to questions about my research that I may not have considered before.
Receiving the funds enabled me to attend the most relevant conference for my field of research; without this, I would not have been able to attend an international conference. Therefore, the funds allowed me to attend the most pertinent conference for my research interests and was most beneficial for guiding my career aspirations without worrying about travel and accommodation expenses that would likely result in me not being able to attend the conference, otherwise.
Since the conference, I have progressed to the second year of my PhD. Attending an international conference allowed me to network with many prestigious researchers from around the world, some of whom expressed interest in my current research and the future for the research. The questions asked about presentations were thought provoking and helped to guide future research ideas for later in my career. I gave two presentations at the conference which increased my confidence to present in the future.
Applying for the Inspiring Futures Fund could offer a fantastic opportunity to develop specific skills in a step towards your desired career. Equally, the funds could offer a chance to gain a greater insight into a career you are considering which could help direct further education choices or skills you focus on developing in the future.