Life on Campus during lockdown
Here’s what the people still at work across Imperial are doing and what they’re looking forward to once lockdown ends…
Ahreum Jung, Invention Rooms Associate, is working on an Imperial College Advanced Hackspace project to produce more than 50,000 disposable visors for the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. Ahreum really misses the hustle and bustle of going out with friends in London.
Sean McGuinness and his team have a critical role maintaining the campus. The lockdown has brought new challenges, including the need to keep flushing all the campus taps to avoid water stagnation and the risk of Legionella. Sean is really missing motorsports, in particular the MotoGP and Formula 1.
Dr Katarina Pollock has overall responsibility for the running of the Oxford-led COVID-19 vaccine study at Imperial. Kat’s children have already planned out the perfect post-lockdown party day, which “starts at 5am on the day lockdown ends.”
Stephen Mendoza in Security Services is one of the team keeping campus safe during lockdown. The hardest part of lockdown for Stephen is the lack of football and the pubs to watch it in with friends.
While the campus is far from empty during lockdown, it is unusual to see the busier common areas and thoroughfares so empty on such a glorious day.
The Hackspace team have taken over an entire floor of the I-HUB at the White City Campus to work on the project to produce visors for the NHS. David Miller (foreground), the Support Project Lead, is looking forward to getting back out in the great outdoors after lockdown and is struggling with exercise restrictions.
Max Naylor-Marlow from the Dyson School of Design Engineering (where he normally works on developing battery packs for electric vehicles) is the Project Leader for the visors project. Max is counting the minutes until he can get back into a riverside beer garden on a Sunday afternoon and can’t wait for the cricket to restart.
Natasha Larburu, a Research Associate in the Department of Life Sciences is also volunteering with the project. Natasha is really looking forward to catching up with family in France once the lockdown ends.
Professor Robin Shattock has had a very high profile during the pandemic, as his lab is developing one of the first COVID-19 vaccines. The vaccine is expected to begin clinical trials in June. You can register your interest to take part in the trials for Professor Shattock’s vaccine on the NIHR Imperial Clinical Research Facility website.
Robin is most looking forward to enjoying a quiet pint at the pub with friends and colleagues once the lockdown ends.
Mohammed Zaffar from Security Services is keeping the gate house at the South Kensington Campus running for the important comings and goings that are still happening during lockdown. Mohammed is looking forward to the return of normal life, as he’s finding that the days are beginning to merge into one.
One of the first trial vaccines in the Oxford-led clinical trial being drawn, ready for administration into a healthy volunteer at the West London Facility.
Research Nurse Marites Aban at the Facility administering the trial vaccine in one of the first trial volunteers. Marites is really looking forward to a big dinner with friends and family once lockdown is lifted.
Marites enters volunteer data in one of the terminals at the Facility.
Dr David Owen, Consultant Physician, is the Head of Clinical Studies Studies at West London Facility, where the vaccine trials are taking place. Here, David is recording a video with the Faculty of Medicine’s Communications Manager, Al McCartney, to help inform people who might want to volunteer for future vaccine trials. David is looking forward to the day that his kids can see their grandparents again.
Clinical Research Technicians Ely and Ahmed are responsible for preparing samples for the Oxford-led vaccine trial at the West London Facility.
Ely is really looking forward to getting back to the spa facilities at the gym after lockdown.
The campus may be in lockdown, but the post team are still busy working to keep the mail moving, which includes forwarding PPE and hand sanitiser produced on site to hospitals and other places where its needed.
Joe has been at Imperial for 19 years and is really looking forward to taking his children to somewhere “other than the garden” after lockdown!
Professor Ara Darzi recording an instructional video at the Institute of Global Health Innovation as part of the antibody home testing programme. The programme, led by a world class team of Imperial scientists, clinicians and researchers, alongside colleagues at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, will help to improve understanding of how many people are currently infected with the virus.
The fingerprick test could also indicate how many people have been infected and recovered since the COVID-19 outbreak began by looking for markers – virus antibodies – of previous infection.
The antibody tests will first be carried out on volunteers from Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust who are known to have had the virus to establish their accuracy.
Professor Christl Donnelly is the Associate Director of the MRC Centre for Global Infectious Disease Analysis, and is working to analyse the transmissibility of the virus that causes COVID-19. Once the lockdown is over, Christl is most looking forward to giving her mum a hug.
Dr Paul McKay has been instrumental in creating Imperial’s COVID-19 vaccine, which is due to begin clinical trials in June. Paul really misses the hustle and bustle of normal London life and is looking forward to the end of his solitary journey into work during lockdown.
Severine Toson is the Department Safety Officer for the Department of Chemical Engineering. Severine’s team is producing hand sanitiser for the NHS during the pandemic. Thanks to a donation of 10,000 litres of ethanol from the West London gin distillery Sipsmith, the team aim to produce 12,500 litres of hand sanitiser by the end of the project.
Severine is most looking forward to being able to hug family and friends again after the lockdown ends.
The Union looking uncharacteristically peaceful. Also triggering a lamp post symmetry crisis for those of an orderly mind…
Jagruti (right) is one of our brand new first year medics who have gone straight into COVID-19 work at the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. Jagruti is supporting work on the human vaccine trials at the West London Facility, and is really looking forward to hugging her far away parents after lockdown.
Nana-Marie is a study physician helping Dr Katarina Pollock run the COVID-19 work at the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust.
The junction of Imperial College Road and Exhibition Road, without the usual activity (and the ever present pink ice cream van!)
Staff Nurse Susanna is working on the vaccine trials. She’s looking forward to being able to sleep eight hours a night after lockdown.
The core Hackspace team working on the visors project, Max, Harry, David and Ahreum, maintain social distance for a group photograph.
Their visors, supplied to the NHS, will be used on the front lines.
Karnyart Samnuan is a Research Postgraduate in the vaccine lab of Professor Robin Shattock at St Mary’s Campus. Karnyart is really looking forward to a Korean BBQ with friends after lockdown and going travelling.
Abdul down in the campus stores, unusually says that his job is essentially the same during lockdown as parcels and supplies arrive much as they ever do, apart from his small wardrobe adjustment (a new facemask) and a greater awareness of personal space. After lockdown, Abdul is really looking forward to a good KFC!
Che-Guevara from Security Services had to cut short his holiday in Tanzania when the lockdown started and is looking forward to getting back out into the sun with friends. During the lockdown, the Security team also perform tasks such as keeping an eye on lab fridge temperatures and as registered first aiders, keeping an eye on everyone still in halls.
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