Professor awarded Supervisor Excellence Awards for 2016
Professor Maddy Parsons has been awarded a Supervisor Excellence Award for 2016 from both King's and the Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine.
Professor Maddy Parsons has established herself as an exemplary interdisciplinary researcher and created an environment that nurtures her students’ strengths and unique styles. Nominated by her PhD student Sweta Raghavan, Sweta describes Professor Parsons as the “perfect blend of an incredible teacher, a reliable friend, and an inspiring boss.”
Research in Maddy’s lab is aimed at understanding the molecular mechanisms that regulate adhesion, polarisation and chemotactic migration in adherent cells. She has an impeccable international profile providing expertise to and developing collaborations with many laboratories in the UK, Europe and the USA. Her group is a great example of being a hub of interdisciplinary research drawing on expertise from various disciplines such as physics, genetics and immunology to name a few. Her students describe her approach to research as “fun and refreshing” and that she has constantly encourage them to push their boundaries and feed their curiosity by exploring fresh ideas, even if they are unconventional.
A household name in applying fluorescence lifetime imaging to analyse Förster resonance energy transfer to the field of cell biology, Professor Parsons is among the top researchers in the world to have mastered and evolved this microscopy technique. She was awarded the Royal Microscopical Society Life Science Medal in 2014 for her outstanding scientific contribution to applying microscopy in the field of cell biology.
She has been instrumental in opening the Nikon Imaging Centre in April 2012, and has served as its Director since the inception. It is the largest imaging facility in Europe and houses 12 state-of-the-art imaging systems. To date it has trained over 200 users and has been the teaching hub for PhD students and postdocs who are keen to learn imaging sciences and microscopy.
Professor Parsons is also on the editorial boards of: the International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology (Section Editor: Signalling Networks in Focus); Open Biology; PLoS ONE; NanoBioimaging; Journal of Visual Experimentation and International Reviews of Cell Molecular Biology. In addition to the above, her enthusiasm for science communication resulted in the creation of the King’s STARS programme- a unique weeklong hands-on training session for disadvantaged pupils.