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Dr Emma Slack

BSc Food and Human Nutrition - Graduated July 2013, 2:1.

Research Associate, Population Health Sciences Institute, Newcastle University and yoga teacher at Raspberry Yoga

Prior to coming to university, I had always been interested in food, nutrition and public health. I had done work placements with a children’s community nutrition and physical activity program and on a dietetics ward. I soon realised that working on the wards wasn’t for me so decided to choose a degree that focused on both nutrition but also aspects of public health and research.



I enjoyed the first two years of my degree and learned a lot. In my placement year, I worked for the Human Nutrition Research Centre (HNRC) at Newcastle University. This fuelled a passion for research! I worked with a team on the Gateshead Millennium study, I contacted participants, sent out information packs and went out to schools and helped to collect data. In the summer before my final year, I was offered the chance to stay on at the HNRC, which of course I agreed to, and helped write some conference abstracts relating to the data I had helped to collect.

My fourth and final year involved both my dissertation project but also looking more at nutrition epidemiology and learning to critique and question research findings. During this time, I applied for and was awarded a 1+3 MSc and PhD scholarship (funded by the MRC and Faculty of Medical Sciences) with the Maternal and Perinatal Epidemiology team at what was the Institute of Health & Society, Newcastle University. Following graduation from my undergraduate degree, before I started the MSc in Public Health and Health Services Research, I was asked back to work at the HNRC over the summer as a research assistant, which cemented my love of research. I graduated from the MSc with a distinction and went on to complete my PhD which looked at the association between maternal ethnicity, anthropometrics and pregnancy outcomes. Following my PhD viva, I had a successful job interview at the university as a research assistant in the applied epidemiology team and have since been promoted to research associate now I have my PhD. I work on a wide variety of projects and do some teaching and supervision of both postgraduate and undergraduate students.

Since completing my PhD, I have also qualified as a yoga teacher. I teach classes in and around Newcastle but have been very privileged to be offering online sessions to university staff via zoom through COVID-19.

I am very grateful to Newcastle University for the many opportunities it has given me, both as a student, and now as a staff member. The encouragement and guidance I have received along the way have been invaluable.