Kimran Hayer - College of Life and Natural Sciences - University of Derby

Kimran Hayer, Biology, 2009

What are you doing now?

Since graduating from BSc Biology, I have continued my outreach work and been on many research-based conferences both internationally and nationally to present my PhD work to a range of audiences including the public, pupils at secondary schools and also specific scientific audiences.

I am currently at the University of Nottingham working as a research fellow after having completed my PhD in microbial genetics.  My PhD was focused on understanding the germination of Aspergillus niger, an industrially important fungus. 

What were the main reasons you took BSc Biology?

I have always enjoyed Biology so it was a natural choice for me to continue with such subject at HE level. The course has enabled me to go onto further study and research. I feel that my journey at the University of Derby has allowed me to follow my interests and hopefully in the future I should be able to achieve my career goal which is to become a lecturer. 

Why did you choose to study the course at the University of Derby?

I liked the fact that the degree at Derby covered a broad range of Biology rather than a specific or applied part which can be found at other universities.

How would you sum up the experience of studying this course?

I would say that it was an amazing experience because I enjoyed every minute of it.  I contributed to the lectures so I got a lot back. A great achievement for me was that I was able to publish my third year research project in the BioScience Horizons journal, a journal that showcases UG work from all universities. 

How did you find the lecturers and the support they gave you?

The lecturers were very supportive to my needs, approachable and I had a good rapport with most of them which was really nice.  This is probably why my lecturers still use an image of me on the billboards they have out during their open days!

How do you feel the University has helped you in your career so far?

Graduating with a First Class Honours degree and gaining the Institute of Biology Best Bioscience Student award made it easier to get a PhD position. I think it also looks favourable to potential employers that I have experience of doing some seminars at the University as an invited speaker showcasing higher education. 

What are your future plans?

I hope to continue research work and gain more experience of delivering lectures to help me achieve my aspiration which is to become a lecturer.  I have a lot of teaching experience however, in some cases it hasn’t been at the HE level.

What would you say to anyone thinking of coming to study this course at the University of Derby?

It's a very good course. Although the structure of the degree has changed somewhat from when I did it, it still provides a good grounding to all areas of Biology which can help progression of undergraduates into further education or PG research.  The University provides a pleasant environment to study any course because it accommodates people from a diverse range of cultures and backgrounds which is really good to see.

"I would say that it was an amazing experience because I enjoyed every minute of it. I contributed a lot to the lectures and in that way I got a lot out of it." Kimran Hayer