The HEE/NIHR Pre-doctoral Clinical Academic Fellowship is a new two-year award designed to equip clinicians with the skills and expertise required to develop a high-quality doctorate proposal, whilst remaining clinically active.
Speaking of her motivation in applying for this award Alison recalls:
“ I became a midwife to contribute to the improvement of women’s health. The ways in which we individually and collectively make big-picture contributions to improving women’s health while working clinically are not always clear. Working for several years in clinical research in the Women’s Health Research Centre, however, has connected me with the pathways and opportunities to now lead my own research.
My particular area of interest is around the transition that women make to motherhood and the way in which we support this transition as midwives, maternity care providers and as society. Bio-medical aspects of birth have become increasingly well-researched and I am keen to contribute to research on the broader anthropological issues influencing childbearing and to support women to collaboratively direct the course of maternity services through research.
In the first instance, I am interested in collaborating with women through a placement in the Patient Experience Research Centre, Imperial College. Through this I will develop my PhD project methodology seeking improvement and innovation around the wellbeing of women in childbearing. I am fortunate to have found two brilliant advisors, Professor Helen Ward here at Imperial College (Public Health and Patient Experience) and Professor Elsa Montgomery (Midwifery) at King’s College, London. I can’t wait to get started!”
This fellowship award will allow Alison to undertake a bespoke training package including; the development of her research interest around well-being and motherhood, key coursework, attend conferences, develop academic collaborations and ultimately prepare a competitive PhD application for future funding.