Seven Questions with... Ashley Slanina-Davies

This week Ashley, a Neuroscience student and Students’ Union Education Officer, encourages you to thank an amazing member of staff by nominating them in the Student Choice Awards by Friday 27 March.

Why are you interested in this subject and what do you plan to do in the future?

I study neuroscience as I am interested in the intersection of risk factors for neuropsychiatric disorders, the functional presentation of those disorders and the efficacy of treatments in different populations. I am specifically interested in transdiagnostic features of neuropsychiatric disorders and if general risk factors have functional correlates. Ideally I would love to undertake a PhD and then work in mental health research.

What is the most interesting thing you’ve done, seen or got involved with while at UCL?

Definitely becoming a Sabbatical Officer! I get to do some amazing things, like judging the Student Choice Awards. If you are interested in becoming the next Education Officer, I would highly recommend it and I am more than willing to talk about my experiences in the role. Look out for the Leadership Race this term.

Have you discovered any hidden gems during your time at UCL?

Do staff count as hidden gems’ One of my favourite moments at UCL was nominating Dr Lawrence Bellamy for a Student Choice Award due to his outstanding support for a genetics module in first year, and seeing him win - our whole year group was very happy with that outcome!

Check out winners of the Student Choice Awards in an exhibition in the South Cloisters until Friday 28 February.

Give us your top three things to do/see/go to in London:

  • The Wallace Collection behind Selfridges is quite something.
  • I enjoy seeing the plethora of indie theatre on (and returned tickets for shows make seeing some of the more expensive plays slightly more accessible).
  • The transport connections that London has mean that so many beautiful places (and countries) are within easy reach. So a great thing to do in London, is to get out of London!
  • If you were Provost for the day what one thing would you do?

    Give every student a single point of contact on arrival, a person who discusses your academic and any relevant personal past (including any barriers you might have or had to education), your goals in taking your degree course, and then co-creates your path through UCL with you. Essentially a person who tailors your programme, skills development, co-curricular activities to support you in getting from where you are, to where you want to be.

    Who inspires you and why?

    My friends. I am lucky to know some of the most inspirational people, people who follow their dreams and passions, prove that anything is possible, and show that fighting to do the right thing is always worth it. They continually inspire me and give me hope in humanity.

    What would it surprise people to know about you?

    I was champion in shot put at high school!

    Save the date: winners will be announced at a grand ceremony on Wednesday 10 June.

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