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Cardiff University’s five year involvement with IAESTE

One of Cardiff Universities’ recent trainee’s was Kamila Mustafina, a biotechnology student from Nazarbayev University, Kazakhstan. “Her work ethic just shone through and she required minimal training” says PhD student Jo James, who is researching how evasive crayfish and parasites interact. “She has been brilliant.” Also supervising Kamila was Dr Jo Cable, whose research includes otter post-mortem examinations, “an advantage of an IAESTE trainee is that they don’t come to you with a remit, there is scope for lots of things, allowing the student and the supervisor to branch out”. 

“We regularly host IAESTE trainees which is a testament to how much we value the scheme and to the high calibre of incoming students.”

Kamila worked on other projects and interacted with a large group of research staff in various stages of their career. This helped her to focus her ambitions and decide that she wanted to go into research and pursue a PhD. And the learning process was by no means one-way. Kamila’s presence in the lab gave staff the opportunity for valuable cultural exchange, from learning Russian to finding out about research techniques and work ethics in Kazakhstan.

Coordinating the IAESTE exchange students in the School of Biosciences is Dr Henrietta Standley. She recently addressed fellow academics and employers, highlighting the benefits of being involved in the programme.