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Ferria Jordan

My name is Jordan, I am from France and I had the amazing opportunity to carry out a Ph.D. at the Plant Science Department. I have been in Cambridge for about a year now. As a Ph.D. student we have many opportunities of training, especially in bio-informatics, and we can also attend all the courses I want. We are also required to submit reports: a project proposal, after about a month, and a full report on our progress after about 8 months. An oral presentation as well as a viva are also part of our first year evaluation. All these elements of evaluation were key points that helped me define the project and get a clear idea of what to do and when. It helped me improve my writing and prepared me to communicate with the scientific community or any collaborators. They may appear challenging at first, but they are also rewarding.

A Ph.D. can however be challenging. It remains frustrating to postpone experiments to do a piece of writing, or to take more time than planned for an experiment. I always feel like things do not move fast enough, and to be honest, things rarely move fast in the research field. It is a different set of mind, and it requires a lot of positivism and robust organisation skills.

My experience at the plant science department has been very satisfying: everyone is very friendly and is always happy to provide help or to talk. I rapidly got to know many people, making of it a very nice place to work at. There are other Ph.D. students and a rather active postgraduate community that organises nice events to socialize.

Every first Friday of the month, a beer hour is organized to talk a bit with everyone in a chilled atmosphere.