Strathclyde Chancellor's FellowsDr Michelle MacLean

Senior Lecturer, Electronic & Electrical Engineering

Dr Michelle MacLean

Having worked as a Research Fellow for a number of years, the Chancellor’s Fellowship Scheme provided me with an ideal opportunity to progress my academic career. I was eager for the opportunity to further develop as an independent researcher and expand my research group, and the Fellowship Scheme was an ideal route. The Fellowship also provided an ideal platform to become more involved with teaching, whilst providing me with time to dedicate to growing my research portfolio. Over the course of my Fellowship I had excellent support from my senior colleagues who were all very happy to provide mentorship and guidance on both the research and teaching aspects of the job! During my Fellowship I also took the opportunity to undertake a PG Certificate in Advanced Academic Studies (Academic Practice), and was also selected to participate in the Royal Society of Edinburgh, Scottish Crucible programme, both of which have provided me with additional training and knowledge towards the broader aspects of building a successful academic career and leading a research team.

I’m an interdisciplinary microbiologist and my Fellowship was an appointment between the Departments of Electronic & Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, with my research fitting firmly within the University’s Health and Wellbeing strategic theme. I am based in The Robertson Trust Laboratory for Electronic Sterilisation Technologies (ROLEST), and my research is concerned with microbial infection control, and the development of novel disinfection and sterilisation technologies for public health applications, with particular focus on healthcare-associated infections (HAI). The emphasis in Strathclyde towards interdisciplinary research and learning, and the drive towards development of technologies and solutions to ‘real-world’ applications makes it an especially dynamic and rewarding academic environment to work in. On a personal level, I found the environment and my colleagues particularly supportive during a period of phased return to work following maternity leave, which really helped me to maintain my portfolio whilst adapting to my new responsibilities! The current COVID pandemic has brought many challenges to people’s lives, and Strathclyde has provided a supportive and flexible environment which has helped balance work and personal responsibilities.

Over the duration of my Fellowship I have grown my research team, and continued to expand my research portfolio, forming new links with both academic and industrial partners. My research has led to a variety of outputs ranging from journal and conference publications, to commercialisation activities, and Strathclyde has been highly supportive in all aspects of this.  Towards the end of my Fellowship period, I was promoted to my current position of Senior Lecturer, and have no doubt that the opportunities that were provided during the period of my Fellowship formed a solid foundation for building my independent research career.