Idil Ismail is a third year PhD Student in the HetSys CDT. As well as working on her PhD project, Idil leads on HetSys Outreach Initiatives, she is involved with the Warwick Black Chemistry Society and has recently been awarded an Iota Sigma Pi travel award.
How did your journey into the Physical Sciences begin?
|I am a third-year PhD student in Computational Chemistry at the University of Warwick, where I work on developing new computational methods to accelerate the prediction and characterisation of complex, multi-step chemical reactions. This is an exciting area of research as it is very multidisciplinary in nature, where I utilise physics, computer science, and mathematics to study complex chemical systems. However, I haven't always been interested in the theoretical/physical sciences. I started my career journey as a life sciences student, where I earned my bachelor honours degree in Biochemistry. At some point in my second year, I realised that I enjoyed the physical sciences more, so I began researching graduate programs that would accept a biology student, and that's how I found Warwick.
What is your favourite thing about your research?
My favourite thing about working in the physical sciences, but more specifically theoretical chemistry, is probably the mobility. As long as you have your computer, you can pretty much work from anywhere and not feel restricted to a lab bench.
Why do you think it is important to highlight women in science? What does it mean to you?
Women have made truly significant contributions to science, yet are often overlooked and rarely featured or mentioned in school science books. Consequently, this lack of representation leads to many female students becoming discouraged from pursuing their interests in science at an early age.