Loughborough Alumni

Our alumni

Abigail Tappenden

Associate Practitioner in Molecular Haematology: The Royal London Hospital

Abigail graduated with a degree in Human Biology from Loughborough University in 2018. Since then, Abigail has gone on to work as a Associate Practitioner in Molecular Haematology. Find out more about her career journey below.

What does your current job involve?

My job role entails performing laboratory procedures such as DNA/RNA extractions and various assays in order to aid in the diagnosis and/or management of haematological malignancies and solid tumours.

What made you want to work in this field?

Within the Human Biology BSc, I enjoyed the genetics modules the most, such as Human Genetics and Forensic DNA analysis. The rapidly advancing knowledge-base of genetics and how we can use this to benefit patient care is what has led me to work in a diagnostic laboratory.

How did your time at university help you make this decision?

The Human Biology teaching staff encouraged me to apply for funding for a 6-week research project related to an area of Human Biology.

Under the supervision of my genetics lecturer, I spent the summer between my second and third year in the laboratory at Loughborough conducting research related to the genetics of diabetes. This was an important developmental period where I gained skills which benefited me in my third-year project and in my career.

After graduating I then opted to complete a MSc in Genomic Medicine.

How have the skills developed during your degree helped you in this role?

I gained the majority of my basic laboratory skills during the 'wet-labs' I undertook within the Human Biology BSc. My third-year project was 'wet-lab' based and this gave me an insight of how to organise myself within a laboratory setting, as well as a lot of problem solving.

What were the highlights of your time at Loughborough outside of your course?

My highlight was meeting people from the other side of the UK, other countries all together, and some that live down the road - all in the small town of Loughborough. We remain very close friends who shared the ups and downs of university life.

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