Andria Hadjithekli

Current student

Course
PhD Student from Cyprus
Study area
Chemistry

Working in industry made me realise that I’m missing the opportunity in working on a research topic which interests me and could possibly make a difference in the world of disease diagnosis.

What is your PhD project about?

My PhD is part of a multi-centre European project called TOXI-triage. Part of this project is the analysis of clinical samples obtained from patients from three different clinics around the world. The purpose of these analyses is to detect changes in metabolism that can potentially allow rapid diagnosis from radiation burns, alcohol and pesticide poisoning.

What were you doing before you started your PhD?

I was working in a Pharmaceutical Company in Cyprus as an Analytical Chemist.

Why did you chose Loughborough University?

First I chose Loughborough University to study MSc Analytical Chemistry. The main reason for applying for this course was the structure which the MSc degree would be delivered, as well as the opportunity for hands-on experience on analytical instrumentation.

What do you enjoy the most about studying a PhD with us?

The past two years I had the opportunity to work in a friendly and supportive team within CAS (Centre Analytical Science), where individuals are prepared to discuss and provide constructive feedback on several topics relating to my research. I get the chance to maintain and work on analytical instrumentation and also work on my self-development through various courses available from the University.

Describe what it is like to study a PhD

Studying a PhD provides me with the opportunity to challenge myself through the research projects since it demands 100% commitment from beginning to end. Self-discipline, clear targets and visions are crucial to aid this ‘roller-coaster’ ride.

Describe a day in the life of a PhD student?

There is practical work being done on a daily basis due to the nature of my project which gives me a more structured routine. Having a weekly and sometimes a daily schedule is necessary since one of the challenges of studying a PhD may give you the flexibility to structure your work according to the needs of the projects, though it’s also a way to develop time management and organisation skills.

Why did you decide to undertake a PhD in your area?

Working in industry made me realise that I’m missing the opportunity in working on a research topic which interests me and could possibly make a difference in the world of disease diagnosis. I find it fascinating working on a topic which can potentially aid numerous people worldwide by putting the theory learned from my undergraduate and masters studies into practise.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

In 5 years I am hoping to continue my career in research by using the skills I’ve gained during my PhD both in self-development as well as knowledge on my research area.

If you could give one piece of advice to a future PhD student, what would it be?

Enjoy the ride! Be prepared to fall down and get up again; believing in yourself even at the toughest times will only make you stronger. It’s an amazing journey during which you can test yourself for its limits.