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The University of Southampton
Chemistry

Julie Herniman

Julie Herniman (Experimental Officer in Mass Spectrometry)

“I started my career at Cardiff University where I became a research technician in the Geology Department after my first degree in Geography and Geology at Plymouth. I worked in South Wales for nine years and took a part-time masters degree in Environmental and Engineering Geology, much of the work involved analysing rocks, sediments and soil and I was also required to do some field work.

Julie Herniman
Julie Herniman

“It was a complete change when I moved to Southampton in 1998 to work in Mass Spectrometry. I saw a post advertised as technician working with Dr John Langley and thought it was time for a change. My husband had taken up a postdoc position at the National Oceanography Centre at the time so it seemed a good move.

“There was a lot to learn, we have 11 different mass spectrometry instruments and I had to understand and learn how to use them all so I could contribute to the research within the School. Shortly after I arrived, the mass spectrometry laboratory moved to a new building so we had to pack up and transfer all the equipment to the new location which was a challenge.

“I like my job as it involves a lot of problem solving and is very different from day to day. Part of the facility is open access and we are mainly working with postgraduate students on the analysis of small organic molecules and natural products, supramolecular complexes, peptides and large biomolecules, particularly oligonucleotides and developing new mass spectrometry methods.

“We largely work office hours but the University allows us to be flexible to cope with eventualities and that can be very useful.”

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