Meet Giorgia Gaeta
WHAT YEAR ARE YOU AND WHAT IS YOUR PHD ON?
I am a full-time 3rd year DPhil student working on protein quality control mechanisms in the endoplasmic reticulum and investigating how cancer cells exploit these mechanisms.
WHAT IS YOUR DAY-TO-DAY LIKE? WHAT DOES YOUR RESEARCH INVOLVE?
Due to the nature of my project being entirely laboratory, I spend most of my day at the Botnar. Each day I go to the laboratory and carry out experiments. On Tuesdays, I have a 1:1 meeting with my supervisor and on Wednesdays we have lab meetings. Both meetings are aimed at overcoming obstacles we might have encountered during the week and to show the progress we have made so far. Working hours are flexible and we say in the lab that we know what time we arrive but don’t know when we leave.
My research predominantly revolves around fundamental biology techniques, with a significant portion of my time spent in the Tissue Culture room, as my work involves cell-based experiments. Additionally, our lab specializes in studying protein folding in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), leading us to regularly conduct Western Blots and various protein-based assays.
WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND? AND WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO A DPHIL AT NDORMS, OXFORD?
I did my undergraduate studies at the University of Glasgow in Molecular and Cellular Biology. During summer of my 3rd year of undergraduate I had an internship working on the ER, there I enjoyed working in a lab and made me want to pursue a career in academia. I looked for PhD programs that did similar jobs and the one offered by NDORMS was really suited for me.
WHAT IS IT LIKE TO BE A DPHIL STUDENT AT NDORMS?
NDORMS is an excellent institution for pursuing your DPhil, offering access to a wide array of resources that benefit you both professionally and personally. Within NDORMS, students enjoy the invaluable support of a dedicated team comprising exceptional professors, highly skilled postdoctoral researchers, and great facilities team, all available to provide help! Because of my involvement with the Student Committee, I have experienced first-hand how the institute works and how much effort and thoughts are given to student wellbeing.
WHAT IS IT LIKE TO BE A DPHIL STUDENT AT OXFORD?
Oxford is a very stimulating environment for DPhil candidates. It allows interactions with students from different backgrounds and gives you the opportunity to build strong connections. While the college system might seem isolating, there are many opportunities for meeting students from other colleges. The university has clubs and societies for any kind of sport and social activity making it an ideal choice for DPhil students.