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Dereham Sixth Form College

Lecture Series: No 12: Dr Simone Payne – Research Technician, School of Biological Sciences, University of East Anglia

24 April 2017

On 31st March we hosted the last of our guest lecturers for this academic year. Dr Simone Payne, Research Technician in the School of Bioloigcal Sciences at UEA came in to talk about her work and her route into her current post.

Having attended Dereham Neatherd High School from 1992 – 1997 Simone initially worked for an estate agency. She explained that the employment helped develop her independence, confidence, happened and motivation, along with making her financially competent. In 2005 she chose to study at Coventry University and completed a Foundation Year in Science before continuing her studies to turn her qualification into a BSc (Hons) in Analytical Science. During the summer she worked at the John Innes Centre. In 2009 Simone began work on her PhD at the University of East Anglia completing her thesis in 2015 which was entitled ‘Biochemical Characterization of DMSP Lyases in Marine Bacteria and Phytoplankton’. Since then she has been employed by UEA as a Research Technician.

In her role Simone supports research to revel; the biochemistry behind e-transfer in Shewanella oneidensis. This involves molecular biology, making DNA and RNA extractions and molecular cloning and involves a number of analytical techniques. Alongside this she is responsible for the maintenance and calibration of chromatography systems for good laboratory practice, including compliance with COSHH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health).

Simone strongly recommended that students contact the UEA and/or the John Innes Centre for work experience and take every opportunity that is available to experience working in a laboratory. She also advocated hard work and application which she demonstrated by improving her maths skills during her degree. Simone did not have a career plan – in fact she didn’t really know what she wanted to do but has always followed her hear. Her message was, “You must enjoy what you are doing.”

Dr Simone Payne

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