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Warwick chemist strikes Silver at poster competition in Parliament

Fabienne Bachtiger, a postgraduate at the University of Warwick, struck Silver at a competition in the House of Commons, for the excellence of her chemistry research, walking away with a £1,250 prize and medal. Fabienne grew up in Switzerland but moved to the UK when she was 12. She went to Durrington High School in Worthing.Fabienne shows off her Silver certificate next to her winning poster.

She presented her research to dozens of politicians and a panel of expert judges, as part of the poster competition STEM for BRITAIN, on Monday 9th March.

Fabienne uses computational methods to find out how to stop large ice crystals from forming in biological materials – for example blood samples or the storage of other fluids.

She comments: “Being able to communicate what you do to lay people is really important for policymaking – it informs policy, it informs other people that might actually want to be involved but don’t necessarily have that level of expertise – but you can make that accessible by explaining what you do at a more friendly, user-level.”

In response to winning Silver, Fabienne added: “I’m over the moon! I never win anything and I’ve worked so hard for this, so I’m really, really pleased. I know of couple of people who have applied in the past who weren’t successful but they said I should give it a go anyway to see, so I gave it a go and I was so happy to just be here – I didn’t expect to win!”

STEM for BRITAIN aims to help politicians understand more about the UK’s thriving science and engineering base and rewards some of the strongest scientific and engineering research being undertaken in the UK.

Addressing the exhibitors, the Royal Society of Chemistry’s Director of Science and Communities, Dr Jo Reynolds, said:

“It’s essential to have quality science informing policy making – and that’s why we’re very pleased(l-r) Dr Janet Hadfield, CEO Biotherapy Services Ltd; Dr Jo Reynolds; Director of Science and Communities at the Royal Society of Chemistry; Fabienne Bachtiger; Stephen Metcalfe MP

to once again support STEM for Britain. There’s no other event quite like it to bring amazing chemical science research – and the people who work on it – into parliament. Everyone presenting here is not only doing important scientific research but the equally important role of communicating it widely – an essential skill for future chemical science leaders.”

Stephen Metcalfe MP, Chair of the Parliamentary & Scientific Committee said:

“This annual competition is an important date in the parliamentary calendar because it gives MPs an opportunity to speak to a wide range of the country’s best young researchers.Fabienne with Matt Western MP – the member of parliament for her university’s constituency, Warwick and Leamington.

“These early career engineers, mathematicians and scientists are the architects of our future and STEM for BRITAIN is politicians’ best opportunity to meet them and understand their work.”

The Parliamentary and Scientific Committee runs the event in collaboration with the Council for the Mathematical Sciences, the Institute of Physics, The Physiological Society, the Nutrition Society the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society of Biology and the Royal Society of Chemistry; with financial support from United Kingdom Research and Innovation, Dyson Ltd, Biotherapy Services Ltd, Warwick Manufacturing Group, the Clay Mathematics Institute, the Heilbronn Institute for Mathematical Research, the Institute of Biomedical Science, the Biochemical Society, IEEE Communications Society, the Comino Foundation and the Society of Chemical Industry.

NOTES TO EDITORS

High-res images available at:

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/march2020/fabienne_bachtiger_image_1.jpg
Caption: Fabienne with Matt Western MP – the member of parliament for her university’s constituency, Warwick and Leamington.

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/march2020/fabienne_bachtiger_image_2.jpg
Caption: (l-r) Dr Janet Hadfield, CEO Biotherapy Services Ltd; Dr Jo Reynolds; Director of Science and Communities at the Royal Society of Chemistry; Fabienne Bachtiger; Stephen Metcalfe MP

https://warwick.ac.uk/services/communications/medialibrary/images/march2020/fabienne_bachtiger_image_3.jpg
Caption: Fabienne shows off her Silver certificate next to her winning poster.

ABOUT STEM for BRITAIN

STEM for BRITAIN (formerly SET for Britain) is a poster competition in the House of Commons - involving approximately 180 early stage or early career researchers - judged by professional and academic experts. All presenters are entered into either the engineering, the biological and biomedical sciences, the physical sciences (chemistry), the physical sciences (physics), or the mathematics session, depending on the researcher’s specialism.

Each session will result in the reward of Bronze, Silver and Gold certificates. Bronze winners will receive a £750 prize; Silver, £1,250; and Gold, £2,000 and a medal. There will also be an overall winner from the five sessions who will receive the Westminster Wharton Medal.

SET for Britain was established by Dr Eric Wharton in 1997. Following his untimely death in 2007, the Parliamentary and Scientific Committee, with support from the Institute of Physics, The Physiological Society, the Nutrition Society, the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society of Biology, the Royal Society of Chemistry and the Council for the Mathematical Sciences, is working to further his legacy.

The event is made possible this year with financial support from United Kingdom Research and Innovation, Warwick Manufacturing Group, the Clay Mathematics Institute, Dyson Ltd, Biotherapy Services Ltd, the Heilbronn Institute for Mathematical Research, the Nutrition Society, the Institute of Biomedical Science, the Comino Foundation, the Biochemical Society, IEEE Communications Society and the Society of Chemical Industry.

The competition is open to early stage or early career researchers, which includes university research students, postgraduates, research assistants, postdocs, research fellows, newly-appointed lecturers, part-time and mature students, returners, those people embarking on a second career, and their equivalent in national, public sector and industrial laboratories, and appropriate final year undergraduate and MSc students, all of whom are engaged in scientific, engineering, technological or medical research.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

Alice Scott
Media Relations Manager – Science
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0) 2476 574 255 or +44 (0) 7920 531 221
E-mail: alice.j.scott@warwick.ac.uk

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

Alice Scott
Media Relations Manager – Science
University of Warwick
Tel: +44 (0) 2476 574 255 or +44 (0) 7920 531 221
E-mail: alice.j.scott@warwick.ac.uk