Sir Patrick Sissons’ studentship awarded

Sir Patrick Sissons’ studentship awarded

Nicole Asemota

Nicole AsemotaThe Evelyn Trust and the Cambridge Trust, working closely with Darwin College, have come together to award the Sir Patrick Sissons’ Studentship to Dr Nicole Asemota. Nicole is a trainee surgeon, with a first-class degree from the University of Nottingham, currently training in cardiothoracic surgery at the Royal Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.  

Nicole is planning a PhD on cardiac transplantation, focussing on the assessment of donated hearts for ‘transplantability’. 

Rebecca Wood, the Trust’s Director, stresses that Nicole was the outstanding candidate at interview. 

“There was unanimous support for Nicole at the selection panel for the studentship. She was clearly the strongest candidate based on achievements to date, clarity of application and motivation. We also felt that she has a very bright future ahead and is likely to make a valuable contribution, both scientifically and as a member of the medical fraternity.” 

This studentship has been awarded in memory of Professor Sir Patrick Sissons, who died in 2016 and was the University of Cambridge’s Regius Professor of Physic following his service as Head of the Department of Medicine. A gifted physician, he led the development of the clinical specialty of infectious disease and carried out groundbreaking research into virus infections in patients with impaired immunity. 

“I was so thrilled to secure this studentship that I danced round my office when I heard the news! It’s such a great honour to be the chosen candidate and to be linked with the memory of Professor Sissons who was a world class researcher in immunology and a brilliant clinical scientist. It’s also a welcome sign of progress for PhD candidates from minority ethnic communities. I seem to be only the second black and female trainee in cardiothoracic surgery in the UK, so I hope I can be a role model to others and encourage everyone to follow their dreams,” says Nicole. 

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