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Jinghua Li, aged 37, studied an MRes in Applied Science at the University, graduating in March this year. During her course, Jinghua developed the devices to measure air quality.

Jinghua now works as a Researcher in the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University. Prior to beginning her studies, Jinghua worked in a number of different roles. She said: “When I came to the UK in 2008, I put my family first and worked part-time as a cashier at Morrisons for nearly 10 years, while raising two children. By the end of 2017, as both kids were enjoying school, I decided to restart my career.

“In the first seven months of 2018 I had four different jobs - a sales and operation lead in an education company; a Chinese translator for Tranmere Rover Football Club; a health assistant supporting people at their own homes and an advisor at a call centre. All of these were OK, but none was the career I was after until I found the fully funded MRes at the University of Chester. I fell in love with Thornton Science Park campus on my interview day - it felt like a gate to a wonderland; it was magical.”

Jinghua added: “The MRes qualification restored my confidence as a research student, after a long time away from the academic world. More importantly, the knowledge and skills I learnt during the project have secured me a research job at the University. The University is a highly informative place filled with diverse events and activities, all the staff I have had contact with are friendly, professional and helpful. I would like to say thank you to those who had supported me in the journey.”

Dr Gavin Phillips, Deputy Head of Department, Mathematical and Physical Sciences, said: “It was brilliant to work with Jinghua on this project. She brought a great deal of professionalism to the work, and I am glad that Jinghua has found a way back into working in the STEM industry after a number of years away.”

Jinghua plans to continue her journey in the academic world, with research interests including energy efficiency, air quality monitoring and sustainability. She also hopes to gain her PhD in a related topic.

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