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Dr Carolina Rezaval

Dr Carolina Rezaval

Dr Carolina Rezaval
University of Birmingham
Who is your scientific inspiration and why?

Leonardo Da Vinci

Passion and commitment. Being an architect, anatomist, artist and scientist, Leonardo Da Vinci was clearly a genius. But I particularly admire his relentless search for creativity, innovation, and fulfilment. I have learnt from him that great science comes from passionate curiosity, pursuing your interests, and continuous learning.

Marie Curie

Don’t give up. There will be times in your life when people tell you that you can’t accomplish something or you feel you can’t make it. Despite a career of physically demanding work, and being constantly discriminated for being a woman, Marie Curie never gave up. She made amazing discoveries, for which she was awarded the Nobel Prize twice.

Anonymous collaborative scientists in the world

Generosity, kindness and collaboration. I admire scientists who support and encourage each other, and are willing to work together. Also, in our lab, we believe in racial justice, diversity, and inclusion.

In three words or phrases how would you describe your supervision style?

I believe I am a supportive and goal-driven supervisor. I work hard to provide an environment that is supportive and scientifically exciting for people to thrive. I will train you, guide you, and mentor you during your PhD, so you can become a great scientist and do excellent science. I will also support you if you’re feeling down and demotivated, as science sometimes can be challenging.

In one or two sentences please describe your strategies regarding the following.
Provision of training:

Your training will be supervised by me or experienced post docs/PhD students until you feel confident and become more independent. We will help you every step of the way.

Progression monitoring and management:

We will discuss expectations of your progression on a weekly/monthly basis. If these progression criteria are not met we will always discuss a plan of action together. I will help you reach the goals set for the project, so you can fulfil your potential as a researcher while doing excellent, creative and meaningful science.


We use ‘Slack’ for sharing lab news, files, data, interesting papers, and track our work. We will meet regularly to discuss the progress of the project and define future aims. But I am happy to discuss any issues that are impacting your ability to fulfil your potential or meet the goals of the project at any time. My office is always open.

How often do your PhD students see you in a timetabled group meeting?

Typically, once per week. But you can approach me spontaneously with a question, a problem, or anything you want to share.

In year 1 of PhD study, how often do your PhD students have a scheduled >30 minute 1:1 meeting with you?

At least once per week. I’m always available for my students.

In year 2 of PhD study, how often do your PhD students have a scheduled >30 minute 1:1 meeting with you?

At least once per week

In year 3 of PhD study, how often do your PhD students have a scheduled >30 minute 1:1 meeting with you?

At least once per fortnight

What form do your 1:1 meetings with PhD students take?

Face to face (if allowed under current health and safety advice)

Open door policy?

Yes, I am usually contactable for an instant response (if required) on every working day.

My expectation of PhD student working patterns?

The timing of work in my lab is completely flexible, and (other than attending pre-arranged meetings), I expect students to manage their own time.

Notice for feedback (e.g. on reports, manuscript drafts, thesis chapters)?

I need at least 1 week’s notice to provide feedback on written work of up to 5000 words.