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School of Geography

Carol White

Carol White

PhD project title: Organic matter cycling by seafloor fauna in oxygen depleted environments
 NERC studentship

I decided to start a PhD because I wanted to specialise and focus my attention on a research area I’d fallen in love with during my undergraduate degree. My BSc dissertation at Edinburgh involved exciting lab work and a complicated analysis de-tangling variables, causes and effects. Although I found it difficult, I really enjoyed being involved with a project that didn’t have an obvious route forwards, but one that spread sideways, upwards and downwards! When a PhD position was advertised at Leeds that matched my dissertation I knew I had to apply. Not only have I been able to research an area I’m both passionate about and intrigued by, but my PhD has already increased my confidence and equipped me with the vital skills to manage greater projects. I’ve had to learn to be self-driven, motivated and flexible in my approach to research and be able to focus on the small details whilst keeping an overview of the big picture at the same time!

Leeds was actually one of my choices when I first applied to for an undergraduate degree, so I already knew about the city’s vibrant atmosphere. There are endless events and activities within the city, but it’s also incredibly easy to escape to the Yorkshire Dales and the East coast. I love running and orienteering (because it involves maps AND speed!) and have joined the amazing university gym, and both student and local sports clubs. The Union also has a huge number of societies which all welcome postgraduates - I’ve been learning sign language, and I’ve met lots of students and non-students from a variety of backgrounds which makes my experience at Leeds even more enjoyable.