What’s it like to be a PhD student at Mater Research

Monday 21 September 2020

A career in research is usually not straight forward. Research in its bare essence is about the pursuit of an absolute truth. Our community anecdotally perceives research careers are really all about staying young and being able to ‘play around’ with science. And starting a career might feel like that at times, but most researchers, at Mater Research, would agree that it is way more than that.

Selwin Samuel is a current PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) student and works in the Stem Cell Biology lab at the Translational Research Institute (TRI). His work focuses on understanding the mechanism by which the not-so-familiar pathology, known as Neurogenic Heterotopic Ossification, forms as a result of Spinal Cord Injury. Neurogenic Heterotopic Ossification is the process of abnormal bone formation which can often lead to severely limited movements of the person afflicted.

His work in the labs, under the tutelage of supervisors Professor Jean-Pierre Levesque and Dr Kylie Alexander, runs invitro and invivo experiments to understand the possible causes of this incapacitating condition.

But why choose Mater Research?

“Working at Mater has been a beautiful journey to date. As a researcher, I have honed my analytical skills. As a person, I’ve been growing and becoming even more responsible. On top of everything, the support I get from Mater for my personal and professional development has been incredible,” Selwin said.

Selwin seeks to better understand bone health with the aim of assisting more people, who live with chronic bone conditions, in the future to experience healthier lives.

“I’m relatively new to Mater. I was fortunate enough to join the team in May last year and have valued the challenges and experiences I have had thus far.

“Mater has a high standard of integrity and ethics. Imposing these resplendent qualities on researchers inculcates a spirit of morality and transparency in all our professional affairs. This truth keeps my esteem for Mater Values at higher altitudes.”

Interested in a career in research? Visit the future students’ opportunities web page.