Careers webinar proves success

  • October 17, 2011
Careers webinar proves success

The first careers webinar of the academic year took place on 8th October.

How to apply successfully for grant, how to patent your ideas and how to take your research from the idea to the business stage were three of the main issues covered in the first virtual seminar on career transitions organised by Gates alumni.

The webinar took place on 8thOctober and was organised by Pradipta Biswas, Rose Spear and Maja Milicevic. The keynote speaker was Pat Langdon, Senior Research Associate at the Engineering Design Centre, University of Cambridge, and the panellists were Dan Greenfield, Director of Fonleap Ltd, Cambridge, Andrew Robertson, Chief Policy Officer, BIO Ventures for Global Health, Ivy Chia, Policy Officer at the Council of Private Education, Singapore, and Maja Milicevic, Assistant Professor in the Department of Linguistics, Belgrade.

The aim was to bring together alumni with experience in academia, government, and entrepreneurial start-ups to give advice to scholars about everything from writing funding proposals and securing funding to shifting to non academic careers and entrepreneurship.

Pat Langdon mentioned the importance of conveying research ideas in a clear and concise manner when applying for grants and spoke about the size of grants that scholars should apply for at the start of their career. Andrew Robertson highlighted the specificity of patent law between countries and the strength of University technology transfer offices in taking a technological idea from the concept to business stage.

Dan Greenfield, who recently founded his company, Fonleap Ltd, spoke about the hard work and long hours needed to set up a business, but also of the inspiration from successful companies and the supportive entrepreneurial environment in Cambridge. He emphasised the importance of having support from a business partner, about the UK tax credits system, visa limitations for students, the patent process, and increased opportunities to apply for an entrepreneurial visa.

Maja Milicevic addressed the transition from a developed country to a less-developed country, saying such transitions required a lot of planning and careful review of the regulations in the country of interest. For instance, it took six months for her to validate her degree before she could take up her position in Serbia. She also emphasised the importance of networking. Ivy Chia highlighted the stability of government positions in Singapore compared to contract research in academic positions.

More webinars are planned in the future, possibly combined with face to face seminars. Pradipta Biswas said: “We are proud to bring together a high quality of speakers and panellists for the benefit of alumni and scholars.”

Picture credit: jscreationzs and www.freedigitalphotos.net

Latest News

‘Glaring’ lack of diversity identified in journal editorial teams

Only a third of editors on journal editorial teams in environmental sciences and public health are women and less than a quarter are affiliated to institutions in low- and middle- income countries, according to a new study. The study, “Challenging the “Old Boys Club” in Academia: Gender and Geographic Representation in Editorial Boards of Journals […]

Exploring at the intersection of humanities and technology

Alex Mentzel has lived many careers and he’s still only in the first part of his life. Brought up in a musical family, he worked as an actor in film, tv and musical theatre, co-founded an app that aims to provide accurate and potentially life-saving information to people living in conflict zones and is now […]

Gates Cambridge announces new Provost

The Gates Cambridge Trust is delighted to announce that its new Provost – its first female leader – will be Professor Eilís Ferran. Professor Ferran has a wealth of experience both as a distinguished academic and as a former Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Institutional and International Relations. She succeeds Professor Barry Everitt as Provost on 1st October […]

Scholar selected as member of Junge Akademie

A Gates Cambridge Scholar has been admitted to Germany’s prestigious Die Junge Akademie. Andrea Binder is one of 10 new members to be admitted to the academy.  It provides interdisciplinary and socially relevant spaces for outstanding young academics from German-speaking countries. Die Junge Akademie was founded in 2000 as a joint project of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and […]