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Student support

to study a series of enzymes that are involved in regulating a plant's response to low oxygen to better understand what that will mean for algae and in de-oxygenated oceans. She received three offers to pursue her PhD, but Wolfson was the only college that offered to contribute living expenses. "This was a really big deal for me; I definitely wouldn't have been able to stay if it hadn't been for the living expenses." Leah loves the sense of community at Wolfson. "It's very warm and very inclusive", she says, "and the staff are wonderful. Their mandate is to see that you are comfortable and that you have anything you need." She also likes the fact that Wolfson tries to encourage people to apply for grants for support. Leah likes travelling and often does so as a member of the Oxford University Surf Club. "It's so important to do something completely different when you're not studying", she says. John Prince DPhil in Healthcare Innovation, Centre for Doctoral Training in Healthcare Innovation John went to Bristol University, where he obtained a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering. Being much more attracted to biomedical engineering than mechanical engineering, he joined the Centre for Doctoral Training in Healthcare Innovation at Oxford. "Oxford actively encourages students from other disciplines by offering a first year of taught models before you go on to your thesis", says John. He is working on signal processing and machine learning to transition medical technologies to East Africa, South Africa and Vietnam. A typical example would be a device that can be clipped on to a child's finger, through which triage can be performed or the seriousness of specific symptoms determined. He is very industry oriented and particularly interested in the start-up culture. He has spent time in San Francisco with a company that has developed a stethoscope that can be used anywhere and uses mobile technology to communicate results. "Biomedicine offers so many more opportunities than mechanical engineering to make a difference in the world", he says. John is attracted to the College's interest in entrepreneurship and would welcome the opportunity to take part in WIN or other competitions.

John was offered funding from the Research Council UK (RCUK) and from Wolfson, where he had already applied. After three years as an undergraduate, he was attracted to being with a more mature group of people and therefore took up the Wolfson offer. He also sees it as benefiting his field of research: "Taking up the Wolfson scholarship means someone else in my field was able to take the Research Council grant", he says. John is involved in Barco, is captain of football and plays music with a couple of bands. Gaudenz Probst DPhil in Social Policy, Department of Social Policy and Intervention Gaudenz is undertaking a comparative investigation of the governance of access to children for same-sex couples in Western European countries. After military service in Switzerland, Gaudenz moved to Canada in search of 'a more relaxed life'. He studied politics and international relations at the University of British Columbia and then moved to Oxford to take an MPhil in Comparative Social Policy, focusing on some of the political issues around EU citizenship. After the MPhil, Gaudenz wanted to stay on but he wasn't sure if he could afford it. "My parents generously paid for my undergraduate degree and I paid for my MPhil out of my Army earnings. I was also offered a place at a university in North America, where scholarships were more widely available, but Oxford was my preference." Gaudenz is enjoying the Wolfson experience. "There are so many things going on, and during the week people stay around and socialise rather than going into town. It breeds a spirit of community, particularly with so many spouses here as well. I appreciate the fact that it's such an open college; you meet really interesting people here and have lovely conversations. My College adviser also brings in another perspective on my academic work and has pitched a few ideas of things I might look into." Gaudenz's own contribution to the community is his Sunday dinner club. "I cook dinner and invite people around for a lovely evening of food and conversation together. It's a good way to start the week and a great way to cement the friendships I have made so far."


Wolfson Plans and Prospects 2016  

Plans and Prospects is Wolfson College's annual magazine for alumni and friends.

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