Outreach & Education
The Outreach Activities of the Society are overseen by a group of members drawn from the various Science Sections as well as the wider microscopy and education community. Our Outreach programme helps anyone with an interest in microscopy, from school children to those who work in microscopy every day.
Other science section
Prof Susan Anderson
RMS Honorary Secretary for Education
University of Nottingham
Susan Anderson has been involved in microscopy for over 20 years. She established and led the Advanced Microscopy Unit at the University of Nottingham for ten years and is especially interested in electron microscopy, confocal laser scanning microscopy and correlative microscopy. She joined the RMS Materials Science Section in 2006 and helped to organise several symposia on the use of microscopy in biomaterials and tissue engineering. She was delighted to be invited to be the Honorary Secretary of Outreach and Education in 2009 and has established a Committee of talented and enthusiastic microscopists and educationalists to drive forward the strategy of the newly established Outreach and Education section. Susan has been involved in Education for many years. She has been a volunteer at her local primary school and has encouraged many primary and secondary school visits to the Advanced Microscopy Unit over the years. In addition, she is involved with a creative science programme which encourages creativity in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths) in a space managed by and for young people. Through this she has been lucky to be involved in working with many primary and secondary schools to improve science provision.
Mr Owen Green
Outreach & Education Section Deputy Chair
Owen has worked in the Earth Science Department at the University of Oxford since 1989. He initially, trained and worked in London Colleges as a Geological Technician and Curator of Geological Collections. He is currently a member of both the Engineering and Physical Sciences and Outreach Committees, and has been a co-convenor of the Geo-materials meeting (September 2014), and organised Outreach events on volcanos and mountain building. He has been a member of the Learning Zone team at mmc and an occasional contributor to infocus. His research interests include sample preparation techniques, particularly those involving applications in light and scanning electron microscopy. He is currently undertaking a 2nd edition of A manual of Practical Laboratory and Field Techniques in Palaeobiology (2001, published by Kluwer, now Springer). Other micropalaeontological research includes a study of the last shallow marine carbonate-platform foraminifera of the Tethyan Ocean recorded in rocks from the NW Himalayas 50.5 million years ago as India crashed into Asia, Neoproterozoic agglutinated foraminifera from NW Europe (Avalonia and Baltica), and contextual studies on the world’s oldest (3.5 billion years old) putative microfossils from Western Australia
Dr Alex Ball
Natural History Museum
Alex is the Head of Imaging and Analysis in the Core Research Laboratories at the Natural History Museum. He has over 25 years' experience in light and electron microscopy and has published research involving transmission and scanning electron microscopy, confocal microscopy and micro-CT. His PhD research involved the use of LM, SEM and SEM combined with computer-aided 3D reconstruction. Now his interests focus on non-destructive imaging and analysis of natural and cultural heritage samples. Over the course of his career Alex has had the good fortune to be tasked with setting up the NHM's micro-CT laboratory and more recently the 3D surface scanning facilities where our first job was to 3D scan an entire blue whale skeleton! He has a keen interest in outreach and education and has led the NHM's imaging activities at the Lyme Regis Fossil Festival for over ten years and routinely participates in the NHM's public outreach events.
Prof Susan Brooks
RMS-Wiley Book Series Editor
Oxford Brookes University
Susan has been involved with the RMS since winning an RMS prize for young scientists giving their first public scientific talk in 1985. Her research uses different types of microscopy -- standard light and fluorescence, confocal and electron microscopy - to study cancer biology. She is passionate about science education and teaches on a range of undergraduate and postgraduate cancer and cell biology courses. She has been an organiser of the RMS Cell Imaging Techniques course since 1996. She has authored and edited half a dozen books and is the RMS-Wiley handbook series editor.
Dr Peter Evennett HonFRMS
University of Leeds (retired)
Peter took his first degree in Zoology at the University of Liverpool, and his PhD at St Andrews, during which time his interests in microscopy developed. He lectured in Zoology at the University of Leeds for 30 years, with a particular interest in animal physiology and histology, cell biology and light and electron microscopy. He retired early from the University and since then has concentrated on his interests in microscopy, including teaching for the RMS and other organisations at home and abroad. He is particularly interested in finding simple ways of teaching and demonstrating the fundamental principles of the microscope to both professional and amateur microscopists. He has taken part in the RMS’s schools’ Outreach activities from the start, and assists in raising funds by recycling redundant equipment to amateur microscopists. Peter has been a member of the RMS for many years, and is an Honorary Fellow of the Society.
Dr Núria Gavara
Queen Mary University of London
Dr Núria Gavara was trained as a physicist before obtaining a PhD on Cell Biophysics at the Medical School of the University of Barcelona (Spain). She expanded her research skills by taking postdoctoral positions at the National Institutes of Health (NIH, USA) and the Institute of Biophysics at the University of Goettingen (Germany). Since 2013, she is a Lecturer in Biomedical Engineering and Biomaterials within the School of Engineering and Material Sciences at Queen Mary, University of London. Her research interests sit at the interface of cellular biophysics, mechanobiology, computer vision and machine learning, with a strong aim to furthering the understanding of the biological processes involved in physiology and disease. The research carried out in her lab focuses on the cell's cytoskeleton, and especially the characterisation of its organization and mechanical properties.To do so, the lab uses a broad cellular biophysics toolbox, including Atomic Force Microscopy, Traction Force Microscopy, high-throughput imaging, advanced image quantification pipelines and machine learning methods.
Dr Chris Hammond
University of Leeds (retired)
Chris, formerly Senior Lecturer in Materials at the University of Leeds, has had a long association with the RMS. Together with a small group of council members he was involved in the establishment of the AMFES initiative in 1995, from which the Outreach and Education programme has largely grown. His motivation is the belief that a child's curiosity about the natural world can be nurtured, from the simplest level, by the observations and discoveries which can be made with the microscope.
In 2015, Chris was awarded the first RMS President's Medal.
Prof Pippa Hawes
The Pirbright Institute
Pippa is the Head of Bioimaging at The Pirbright Institute based in Surrey. Projects centre around investigating the interactions between animal pathogens and host cells. Bioimaging is dedicated to using and developing confocal and electron microscopy techniques to study viruses exotic to the UK that infect farm animals. Pippa has extensive experience in the field of electron microscopy and is an active member of the RMS EM section committee. She believes the RMS has an important role to play in the promotion and teaching of microscopy and is consequently a member of the Outreach and Education committee and lecturer at the RMS EM School.
Prof Rob Kesseler
University of the Arts London
Rob Kesseler is a visual artist and Professor at Central Saint Martins. As University Chair in Arts, Design & Science he has initiated a series of events and opportunities for students drawing on his extensive links with the science community, including surgeon Roger Kneebone (Imperial College) and biologists Enrico Coen (John Innes Plant Science Centre) and Chris Hawes (Oxford Brookes Micro Imaging facility). As NESTA Fellow at Kew (2001-2004) he undertook research into a range of microscopy techniques from which he developed an extensive collection of images. These were exhibited in a solo exhibition at Kew and provided the basis for a series of award winning books on Pollen, Seeds and Fruit. In 2010, as Year of Bio-Diversity Fellow at the Gulbenkian Science Institute in Portugal, he worked with molecular biologists to create a collection of cellular images derived from microfine sections of local flora which have featured extensively in exhibitions in Portugal, Germany, Tasmania, USA, China and Chile.
Mrs Niga Nawroly
Niga is a qualified immunologist from Imperial College London with 10 years’ experience of the management of a successful flow cytometry facility. She has also worked for a number of flow cytometry reagents and instrumentation companies. She is interested in education in flow cytometry either as an organiser or a teacher/trainer. She has been an active member of the Flow Cytometry Committee for a number of years.
Dr Noah Russell
University of Nottingham
Noah is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Nottingham.
Mr Peter Sainsbury
Fellow of the Primary Science Teaching College (PSTC), PST Trust Cluster Mentor, Winterbourne Earls C of E Primary School, Association for the Study of Primary Education (ASPE), National Executive
Since training at King Alfred’s, Winchester, Peter has taught in a variety of settings in Middle and Primary schools. Although the sciences have always been the subjects for him, Peter finds the range of opportunities and the linking of learning that takes place when working with Primary aged children thoroughly enjoyable and fascinating.
Peter has held a number of posts, including 2 Deputy Headships and 2 Acting Headships, and enjoyed further studies to help in these roles. Although committed to school leadership, Science and classroom practice have always remained equally important; he just can’t quite let go of that classroom bit!
In recent years the potential for further involvement in Science has grown and grown, largely through Peter’s role as a Fellow of the Primary Science Teaching College (PSTT). In 2012 he was delighted to receive the National Primary Teaching Award from the IOP. His work with the Association for the Study of Primary Education (ASPE) also provides a useful perspective. Whilst still contributing to school leadership, his most recent role keeps him rooted in the classroom yet gives him a ‘remit to roam’ for Science and Education.
Dr Andrew Scott
University of Leeds
Andrew is a senior lecturer in the Institute for Materials Research. He has extensive experience of a wide range of experimental (advanced electron microscopy, light microscopy, surface analysis, X-ray diffraction) and theoretical (ab-initio materials modelling, crystallography) techniques, acquired in both academia (Leeds, Newcastle, Brunel) and industry (BP Research). He is secretary of the Materials Chemistry Committee of the IOM3.
Dr Kerry Thompson
National University of Ireland, Galway
Dr Claire Wells
Life Sciences Section Chair
King's College London
Claire's laboratory is interested in how cancer cells are able to dissociate from the primary tumour, invade the surrounding tissue and subsequently metastasise to distal sites. They use a lot of microscopy in the work, including confocal, TIRF and FRET in addition to live cell imaging to investigate the role of PAK family kinases in cancer cell migration, adhesion and invasion. Claire co-organised the 2012 RMS Abercrombie meeting and is involved in a number of RMS events. She is the life sciences representative on the RMS Outreach committee and has been working with local primary school children bringing microscopy into the classroom.