Karen Ayres (University of Reading)
My undergraduate degree was in pure mathematics, a subject which I enjoyed immensely. But it was the statistics modules I took during that degree which really fired my enthusiasm, and showed me the numerous interesting areas of application that statistics (and mathematics) could have. So, after graduating, I took an MSc in statistics, and then a PhD in statistics applied to problems in genetics. From there I moved on to postdoctoral research, again focusing on statistical genetics.
After completing my postdoc towards the end of 2001, I was extremely pleased to become a lecturer. Teaching had been an ambition of mine since schooldays!
For me, the excitement of being a lecturer lies in the variation in the day-to-day work. Yes, there is tremendous variation! I enjoy the challenge of teaching different students about the theory of statistics and relating it to many important areas of application. I look around for interesting projects for undergraduates and postgraduates to work on, so as to stimulate their enthusiasm for the subject. And as well as all this, I am able to continue my research in statistical genetics.
For me, being a lecturer is simply an extremely rewarding and fulfilling career.