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5 Minutes with Sophie Rust

Sophie Rust is the Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator for the Success for Black Engineers and Success for Digital Futures programmes at the School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences. We spoke to Sophie about "squiggly careers", life at and outside of work and her fascination with bouldering.

5 minutes with Sophie Rust

1. Briefly, could you tell us about your background and career up to this point?

I studied French, Russian and some Ukrainian at university, spending my year abroad in Moscow, before taking an internship at a human rights charity. I stayed there in various positions for four years. But before that, my first job out of university was actually at a nutrition startup called Huel - I was the first employee and helped box up orders. It’s funny to think of that now as it’s a super successful business with products in all major supermarkets! Since working at King’s I’ve been in the Careers & Employability team, central Equality, Diversity & Inclusion team, and now I’m based in the School of Biomedical Engineering & Imaging Sciences. I currently coordinate two programmes – Success for Black Engineers and Success for Digital Futures.

2. What advice would you give your 18-year-old self?

Don’t be afraid to fail and don’t be worried that you don’t know what you want to do ‘when you grow up’. I’m very much a fan of squiggly careers and taking opportunities when they come up. Learning what you don’t like doing is as valuable as learning what you do like doing.

3. What is your favourite thing about your role?

I get to work with amazing colleagues, students and young people who inspire me. The Success for Black Engineers working group is a fantastic example of how people can come together and make change. I feel very privileged and proud to work with this group to tackle underrepresentation and awarding gaps in engineering.

4. What does a typical day look like for you?

Every day is very different – I’ve started coming into the office more as it’s very sociable! I usually have a mixture of meetings, desk-based tasks and emails each day. I coordinate mentoring and outreach activities, so my favourite days are probably when we have an in-person student event or school outreach session.

Sophie at the King's Staff Wellbeing Festival's Cuddle Club event

5. What do you like to do outside of work?

I still love learning languages and I’m taking German at the moment so I can speak with my husband’s family in friends when we visit them in Hamburg. A couple of years ago I started bouldering – inspired by the Olympics - and am now obsessed! It’s such a friendly sport, which I’d recommend to anyone.

Quick-fire Round:


Favourite Season?

Autumn – it’s cliché but the leaves!


Your go-to coffee order?

Decaf latte – I like my sleep


Favourite book/TV show?

Brooklyn 99 or Schitt’s Creek


Who would be your ideal dinner guest?

Probably an Olympic boulderer!

In this story

Sophie Rust

Sophie Rust

EDI Coordinator

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