Olivia Walker

Olivia Walker Mount Bental Copy
Olivia and friends enjoying the sun rise at Mount Bental ISSI 2007

I still vividly remember the early morning hike up Mount Bental to catch a glimpse of the sunrise, as part of the Dr Bessie Lawrence science programme. After camping overnight, our guide woke us, drumming a metal pan, and led us along the steep and winding climb. As soon as we reached the top and admired the beauty of the panoramic view, the early start was forgotten. 

Looking back, in many ways hiking had similarities with scientific careers. Both can be voyages into the unknown. Once a goal is reached, there is an overwhelming sense of satisfaction, which drives hikers to explore further and scientists to ask new questions.
 
The Summer Science Institute gave me my first taste of exploring unanswered scientific questions, in this case examining muscle development in fruit flies at the Department of Molecular Genetics. Little did I know, that four years later, I would be working for a cancer research PhD at the Laboratory of Molecular Biology and Department of Chemistry in Cambridge. I hope in future to combine this with clinical practice. Summer science at the Weizmann Institute was inspirational at a crucial moment and has left me with long-lasting friendships within the Weizmann community. 

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