Inspirational learner top of the class with best marks in the country

A young woman from South Wales has boosted her knowledge and skills by working alongside a Nobel Prize winner.

Chloe Brind, 18 from Bargoed, a learner at Coleg y Cymoedd, was one of only 68 people across Wales to take part in a Nuffield Research project this year. The specialist research, in Chloe’s field of science, was supported by the National Museum of Wales in the Biodiversity & Systematic Biology Department, where Chloe was completing a placement at the time.

The Nuffield Research Placement provides leaners each year with the opportunity to work alongside professional scientists, technologists, engineers and mathematicians, available across the UK in universities, commercial companies, voluntary organisations and research institutions.

The aim of Chloe’s research project was to investigate the physical characteristics and genetic differences between two types of lugworm. Significantly during her research, new characteristics were identified and more differences between the two species of lugworm were found than previously described. This research was found extremely useful by the Museum, making it significantly easier to distinguish the two species.

During the placement, Chloe had the opportunity to meet a former Nobel Prize winner, Professor Sir Martin Evans who is based at Cardiff University, and who was able to discuss the various aspects of Chloe’s project with her.

Chloe said: “The Nuffield Research placement was a really rewarding experience and it was fantastic to be able to work with leading scientists in their specialist field.

“My research task was really interesting and helped me decide that this is the career I definitely want to pursue.”

As part of the scheme participants were invited to Techniquest in Cardiff Bay to display the results of their research. It is hoped that the placement with the National Museum of Wales will secure Chloe’s place at Birmingham University once she finishes her A-levels in June.

Ian Rees, Head of Coleg y Cymoedd’s dedicated Sixth Form Centre at the Nantgarw campus, commented on Chloe’s success: “We are delighted and proud that Chloe has been chosen to have the opportunity to take part in one of the prestigious Nuffield research placements, and very much hope it will lead to further exam and career success for her in her chosen field of Science.”

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