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I got my PhD

I’m going to start when I stopped being a vet, after five long years qualifying and many years before ‘seeing practice’ in the evenings, weekends and holidays!I spent the first few unemployed months in a haze. My head was full of conflicting feelings, both positive and negative about my career and my self-esteem.

But I managed to get a PhD back at the vet school. I remember on my first day, my supervisor said to me “don’t ever tell anyone in the pub or anywhere else, what this work is do you understand?” But I’m going to describe it now. My project was to design a new vaccine for feline leukaemia virus, FeLV. I was to then perform a vaccine trial to test the vaccine. Turns out, the vaccine performed better than any other vaccine for the virus, including the one commercially available.

I loved the black and white of the results, it gave me a great feeling inside. I must say though, there were times when it took ages to get a positive result. For example, I needed to analyse literally hundreds and hundreds of samples to find the correct one I could use to finally make the vaccine. Frustrating, but when I finally found it, it felt fantastic!

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