Emma worked in engineering, but took a career break to take care of her family. Returning to education as a mature student led her onto a new career path.
'I thought that having a family and young children might limit me, but if you organise yourself then it is not a problem. If I can do it, anyone can.'
I looked at all the forensic courses across the North East and came in to talk to an adviser at Teesside University. I liked the sound of the modules and felt very welcomed. I also attended an open day, which was what finally made up my mind, meeting the staff and seeing the facilities.
I had a very positive experience as a mature student. I was 30 when I started and I thought I might struggle to develop relationships with the younger students, but that couldn’t be further from the truth as I have made some lasting friendships. I also thought that having a family and young children might limit me, but if you organise yourself then it is not a problem. If I can do it, anyone can.
My overall experience was extremely positive. The organisation and content of my course was outstanding and the staff were fantastic. I took the extended route and completed a foundation year before starting my degree. I would highly recommend doing it this way as it helps you to understand what is expected at university and get into degree mode.
I enjoyed my third year project and Wellcome Trust scholarship and research placement in the summer. This allowed me to become involved in research into illicit drugs in wastewater which was subsequently featured in the news. It also allowed me to work with Dr Gillian Taylor who is an exceptionally brilliant lady.
In the future I would love to do research or perhaps work in the testing of pharmaceuticals. I love lab work - as long as I am in a lab I will be happy.