Third year PhD student at the University of Chester, Sheena Worthington had a love of chemistry from a very young age. Inspired by the likes of Albert Einstein and Nobel prize winners this former nurse from the Philippines excelled in chemistry.
“It was always my highest mark at school and when I wanted to be a doctor my mother advised against it as we didn’t have the funds. She told me I should study to be a nurse and then if you have the money you can study further.”
And studying is what she is now doing. After completing her degree in nursing and a degree in pharmaceutical science in the UK, Sheena turned to chemical engineering gaining a place at the University of Chester within the Eco Innovation Team and Smart Creative Technologies Ltd department. Her PhD is investigating the potential approaches to recycle auto catalyst materials.
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The disused materials that make up auto catalysts can be badly wasted by industries such as construction. The environmental impact of not recycling could lead to depletion in natural resources, escalation in environmental pollution, reductions in the economy and rise in energy consumption. If the catalytic converter is open and catalyst material is exposed the waste material becomes hazardous and the project aims to look at processes to recycle auto catalyst materials safely and efficiently.
Advised to join the RSC by her University experimental officer, Sheena has made full use of the advice available.
The career and professional development team has provided me with careers guidance especially on how to improve my thesis and scientific writing and improving my CV which will be so important when I am looking for a job at the end of my PhD. The RSC also helped with my application to the Science Council for registered scientist (RSci) status.
“The careers advice from the RSC is based on a deep knowledge and so skilled. The contacts they have, especially on the subject of advances in materials, means I have been able to contact the right people to help finish my studies.”
Looking to the future Sheena is concentrating first and foremost on completing her PhD and if she finishes on time might apply for a Post Doc but whatever she does she will be following her mother’s advice to ‘always do what is hard’.
“I am doing that, it is an arduous process, but it is worth it. I want my children to be proud of me – that’s my aim.”
Her current charity work to help raise money to provide food to the poorest people in the Philippines, who are unable to rely on food from restaurants due to Covid-19 closures, is yet another example of the dedication and hard work that is part of Sheena Worthington’s persona alongside her deep love of chemistry.