Lydia Mardell – Rising Star in Public Engagement 2022

Lydia Mardell, PhD student in Queen Square Institute of Neurology, has been awarded the Rising Star in Public Engagement Award for 2022. Lydia has actively sought out opportunities for public engagement throughout her PhD and taken part in a variety of different projects. 

The OPM Collaboration project, which aims to engage young people with epilepsy and make the OP-MEG scanning process more comfortable, ran its creative workshops over Zoom during the pandemic. Lydia helped run these workshops, engaging with young people with epilepsy and discussing the various OP-MEG helmet designs participants came up with, learning more about why the young people chose various modifications to their helmets.

Lydia has also engaged with charities outside of her research, working with the children’s charity Institute of Imagination (iOi). Along with three other researchers from a wide range of backgrounds, Lydia co-developed a new organisational Theory of Change for the Institute.

Her passion for encouraging people to engage with science and research is demonstrated across her projects including creating a video summary of MEG for stroke survivors at the UCL World Stroke Day Forum, and motivating underprivileged students to join science by hosting a Nuffield research placement.

Lydia’s dedication to public engagement and strong drive to seek out new opportunities secured her the prize of Rising Star in Public Engagement 2022.

On winning her award, Lydia said:

“I’m really grateful to have been chosen for the Rising Star award. The engagement projects I have been lucky enough to get involved in have been really inspiring. Receiving this award has given me a chance to reflect on these projects and encouraged me to continue to embed public engagement within my work in the future”

Congratulations to Lydia on all her fantastic contributions to public engagement!

Awarded June 2022.