Alasdair Henderson

Project: Spatial transmission of influenza and dengue fever in the Western Pacific




What were you doing before you joined the MRC DTP scheme?

I applied to join the scheme while I completed my MSc in Medical Statistics at LSHTM. Before that, I had worked at the Office for National Statistics for two years as an Economics graduate.

Why did you choose your primary institution (LSHTM or SGUL)?

I was already studying at the London School and love the research environment it provides so wanted to stay here.

What do you enjoy most about your day-to-day work and the people you work with?

The level of expertise that are readily accessible, from my supervisors, our mathematical modelling research group and fellow PhD students. In addition, the flexibility and control I have over my work.

What do you value most about the MRC DTP studentship?

My project is innovative and I think helps solve important problems in Public Health. The financial support for research and training support is brilliant and allows me to make the most of all the opportunities available at the School, from attending conferences to improved technical equipment so I can work more efficiently.

What additional training have you attended with MRC DTP money?

I spent three weeks in Seattle at the University of Washington’s Summer Institute in Statistics and Modelling in Infectious Diseases. This provided valuable skills training from leading academics from around the world. I have also attended the inaugural Conference on Infectious Disease Dynamics in the Lake District and will be going to Barcelona for the Epidemics conference.

Where did you go on your placement? What did you do?

I have not been on my placement yet but am looking to spend the time gaining experience in mosquito control in the Pacific region which my research focusses on.

Do you have any tips for future MRC DTP scholarship applicants?

Briefly speak to the supervisors of the projects to which you are thinking of applying. It gave me a better idea of what the projects involved and I changed my primary choice as a result.

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