Raising aspirations for women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

My name is Serena Cunsolo and I'm a PhD researcher in the School of Civil Engineering and Surveying. I'm researching micro-plastic pollution in waster waters. The reason why my research is important is because once these micro-plastics end up in the ocean, they can potentially harm sea life and eventually human health.

Hopefully, the results of my research will promote innovation in technologies and the implementation of reduction measures to preserve the aquatic environment.

The reason why I decided to undertake a STEM subject is because to me, science is very exciting.

Before starting my PhD, I joined the Ocean Cleanup which is a Dutch foundation whose aim is to develop technologies to intercept and extract plastics from the Ocean. I had the chance to go on an oceanographic cruise to the North Pacific Ocean and collect plastic debris. As a Marine Biologist, being in the North Pacific Ocean miles and miles from shore and surrounded by aquatic species, was one of the most amazing adventures I have ever had.

The message I would give to young girls is to push your boundaries, go out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself because in the moment you do that, you can have amazing experiences and many opportunities.

Blog post written by Serena Cunsolo, Italy.