When Helen Kinney approached the RSC Kent Local Section for help in attending the Biomaterials Annual Conference in Nottingham earlier this year, they rose to the challenge and provided sponsorship towards her accommodation costs.
At 18 years old Helen undertook voluntary research in biomaterials at the University of Greenwich in Medway in January 2012 after early completion of her A-levels. The results of her in vitro studies were positive and she had an abstract and poster presentation accepted for the 2012 conference.
“On the 27th
June, I had the fantastic opportunity to attend the annual UK Society for Biomaterials conference in Nottingham. Here I was able to attend presentations by those carrying out current research in the field, as well as view and discuss the research posters of others. This was not only fascinating in terms of new areas of knowledge and hypotheses, but also in experiencing different approaches to research itself.
The talks covered a range of topics, including mechanobiology and the use of sophisticated bioreactors for in vitro studies, the development of scaffolds and material formulation and modification for tissue engineering, and the factors influencing cell response in different circumstances. I also had the chance to discuss my own research on bioactive composite membranes, completed alongside others at Greenwich University during my recent placement, and presented as an abstract poster at the conference.
I found the experience a very informative and valuable one, which definitely enthused me even further ready for the start of my studies of Biochemistry at university next year. I am very grateful to the Kent Local Section of the RSC for supporting my attendance, and to those at the Medway Campus of Greenwich University, including Nichola Coleman, Andrew Hurt and Sam Booth, without whom I would not have had the chance to carry out research nor consequently attend such an event.”