WCAIR winners at SLS awards

Each year the School of Life Sciences recognises the successes of its staff through a series of prizes presented at the School Review of the Year.

This year members of WCAIR won the prizes in two categories.

Brian Cox Prize for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research

The Brian Cox Prize for Excellence in Public Engagement with Research has two categories. The Engaged Researcher was jointly awarded to Lauren Webster and Lesley-Anne Pearson. Lauren Webster whose recent public engagement activities include volunteering in Kenya & sharing with school pupils there about the work in the DDU; participating in ‘I’m a scientist, get me out of here’, community events including Mills Observatory & Stobsfest; provide lab tours for public visits to DDU and encouraging others to take part especially the WCAIR trainees who she works with. Lesley-Anne Pearson whose recent activities include co-development of the science show ‘Drug Discovery in 5 Experiments’ which has been published in ACS Med. Chem. Lett; training other researchers to run the science show; participating in numerous events including Science Saturdays at the Mills Observatory, school visits, community events; and collaborating with artists for WCAIRs science art programme with outputs include para-site-seeing.org


Project of the Year was named as Kirsty’s Project: Searching for a New Medicine. This was a truly collaborative project involving input from staff from across the School, in particular, DDU, BCDD and WCAIR. Kirsty’s Project: Searching for a New Medicine is an illustrated children’s book about how our scientists developed a potential new drug for leishmaniasis. The book was written by Suzanne Duce and Tracy Bayliss, and illustrated by Daisy MacGowan. They worked with staff across the divisions and School to ensure the book reflected the research process and was accessible to the target age group.

People’s Award

A new award was established this year. The People’s Award has been created to acknowledge staff who make positive contributions to School culture. All members of the selection committee were deeply impressed by the very high quality of all the submissions and were unanimous with presenting this award jointly. Erin Hardee (SLS Schools Outreach Organiser) and Ali Floyd (WCAIR Public Engagement manager) received the award for the formation of the SLS and subsequently UoD LGBT+ Staff Group. The selection committee particularly noted the fact that Erin’s and Ali’s contributions to Diversity and Inclusion not only positively affected culture in SLS but had impact across the University.

Anna Segarra-Fas and Elena Purlyte on behalf of the PiCLS committee for leadership in our PhD community.

Read about all the prize winners.