2016 – 2017

2016-2017 Student Cohort

2016-2017 Student Cohort

Alba Aceveda Fernandez:

alba_newI’m originally from Puertollano, Spain, and graduated in Chemical Engineering in the University of Castilla-La Mancha, completing a MSc in 2016.  My undergraduate project was focused on the development of gypsum for passive energy storage using Phase Change Materials (PCMs). During my MSc, I worked for a year and a half in an environmental group (IMAES Group) with a project about potabilization of water for Third World. This project gave me the opportunity to get knowledge of microbiology, heterogeneous photocatalysis and characterization of catalysts. In my spare time I enjoy painting, reading and practicing “BodyCombat”.

Callum Woof:

calum2I’m originally from Send, Surrey, and previously graduated from the University of Bath, completing an MChem degree in the summer of 2016. I previously worked with Intrinsiq Materials Ltd. for a year, working to produce high-quality nano-copper inks and thermoelectric materials. In my final year project at Bath I worked in the Webster group, investigating various organoiron complexes, and their ability to catalyse hydroborylation reactions over a wide range of alkene-based substrates. Furthermore, I investigated further into the kinetics of the reaction in an attempt to attain a greater understanding of the overall reaction mechanism. In my free time I enjoy climbing mountains, consuming a surfeit amount of tea and beer (normally at different times), travelling and supporting Watford FC through the good, bad, and terrible.

Charlotte Ellis:

imageedit_2_3948409162I graduated from the University of Bristol with an MSci in Chemistry in 2016. Throughout my undergraduate degree my research was focused on homogeneous catalysis.

In 2015 I received an EPSRC Research Bursary which allowed me to complete a summer project within Professor Bedford’s group on iron-catalysed C-H activation of indole derivatives. I continued to work within Professor Bedford’s group in my final year, where I completed my Master’s thesis on iron-catalysed carbon-heteroatom bond-forming reactions.

In my spare time I enjoy collecting vinyl records and learning about astronomy.

Ioli Howard:

I graduated with an MChem from the University of Southampton in 2016. I carried out my third year industrial placement at Merck, where I worked with Polymer Dispersed Liquid Crystals. I worked on my final year Masters project in the Raja group. My research involved synthesising novel heterogenous bimetallic aluminophosphate catalysts for use in the Beckmann Rearrangement which started my interest in catalysis, encouraging me to apply to the CDT. Outside of chemistry I enjoy traveling, reading and ballet.

Jamie Carden:

Originally from Birmingham, I came to Cardiff in 2012 to study an integrated masters in chemistry. During the third year of my studies, I made the decision to study in Oulu, Finland as part of the Erasmus programme. Part of this programme involved a nine months research under Prof. Risto Laitinen on the oxidative additions of ditellurides to platinum. Returning to Cardiff, I began my final year project under the supervision of Dr. Paul Newman, which involved the synthesis of novel tridentate ligands and trimetallic complexes. As my previous lab experience has been mostly aimed towards homogeneous catalysis, I chose to apply for the CDT to widen my future career prospects by gaining a fuller understanding of heterogeneous catalysis and chemical engineering. When not in the lab, my interests include getting easy questions wrong on University Challenge and listening to Scandinavian heavy metal.

Joseph MacGinley:

joe cdt 2I graduated from the University of Nottingham in 2016 with a first class MSci Hons Chemistry degree.

My masters project was completed on Erasmus exchange in Leiden University under the supervision of Prof. Lies Bouwman/Feng Jiang, the project involved investigation into the disulphide/thiolate equilibrium in complexes of transition metals and chelated sulphur based ligands. I also performed a summer project in the University of Nottingham for BP under the supervision of Prof. David Amabilino looking into the potential use of organic gelating molecules for the application of cleaning oil spills. In my spare time I am a keen West Ham fan (unfortunately) and enjoy playing football whenever I can

Matthew Conway:

I am originally from near Manchester and graduated from the University of Warwick in 2016. In my third year I was fortunate enough to take part in a four-month research exchange programme with Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Whilst there I worked under the supervision of Dr Dragoslav Vidović where I worked on a carbone-stabilised Lewis acidic phosophorus(III) species. My MChem project was supervised by Professor Rachel O’Reilly and studied the self-assembly behaviour of poly(norbornenes) synthesised by post-polymerisation modification. Catalysis has always fascinated me and the CDT will allow me to further study this area. When not studying chemistry, I enjoy reading, playing videogames, running, and watching football.

Owen Rogers:

I graduated with an MChem from the University of Sheffield in 2015.

I spent my final year project with Professor Grasby working with Flap Endonuclease enzymes. I have also been on a summer placement in industry with AstraZeneca in Molndal, Sweden. I enjoy travelling and I have been on an inter-rail trip around Scandinavia and Eastern Europe, I also enjoy playing golf and football.

Robin Groleau:


Originally from France, I grew up in a small town called Fontainebleau, near Paris. I quickly chose to focus on Science, and moved to Bristol in 2011 to begin my MSci in Chemistry at the University of Bristol. Most of my experience is in chemical synthesis, having spent my third year in RedX Oncology designing and synthesis anti-cancer drug candidates. For my Masters project I worked on on LBA-mediated heterocyclic cyclisations in the Booker-Milburn group. I spent the year after my degree working as a Maths & Chemistry private tutor, in particular with students in foster care at the John Cabot Academy. Chemistry aside, I spend most of my time fencing, reading or playing board games.

Roman Abrams:

Roman completed his MSci in chemistry with industrial experience at the University of Bristol.

He completed a year in industry with AstraZeneca, where he was tasked with the synthesis of macrocyclic compounds. Roman then subsequently joined the Bedford group, where he was tasked with the investigation of a directing group mediated iron-catalysed biaryl Suzuki-Miyaura cross-coupling. Roman enjoys swimming, cycling and acting.

 Samuel Scott:

samuelI graduated from Imperial College London with an MSci degree in 2015 which consisted of research in the Hii group, studying the use of Methylene bridged bis(imidazoline) derived sulphoxide salts for a range of asymmetric Michael additions. Following graduation, I was employed by GSK to prepare samples for a multitude of assays and have volunteered at a school, promoting chemistry as an interesting career path. Outside of chemistry, I enjoy karate, holding the grade of first kyu and have been a Newcastle united supporter all my life. I am an avid board game player with a small but entertaining collection.

Stephen Williams:

stephen williams CDT bio photo

Originally from the Isle of Man, but moved to Swansea in 1998. I started my MChem degree at the University of Bath in 2012, before transferring to Cardiff University in the 2nd year, graduating in 2016. I have a keen interest in environmental/green chemistry and my Masters research project, under the supervision of Prof. Philip Davies, was focussed on investigating the photocatalytic activity of TiO2, WO3 and layered TiO2/WO3 films to oxidise stearic acid under UV light – which had links to environmental remediation. I hope to pursue this interest in the research projects offered by the CDT in catalysis. Outside of my academic work, I am a black belt (1st Dan) in karate and enjoy hiking, playing badminton and reading. I was also a member of the successful Cardiff University Dancesport Team in 2015.

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