Lyndsey Fox – Post-doctoral Researcher/Palaeontologist

MGeol (Hons) Geology graduate

Lyndsey Fox
“After my MGeol degree at Plymouth I went on to do a PhD at the University of Leeds. My research is focused on a group of microfossils called foraminifera and what they can tell us about the oceans and past climate change. In 2015, I was offered a research position at the Natural History Museum in London and have been here ever since!”

Why Plymouth? 

I really liked the fieldwork offered with the course. With geology I believe it’s so important to see real-world examples to fully understand key concepts. During my degree I got to visit beautiful parts of Wales, Spain, Sicily, and Cyprus that I might never have otherwise seen. 
I learned the importance of critical thinking, and developed my spatial thinking which is important for visualising the 3D problems I encounter every day as a geologist and researcher. 
I found the library, with its private meeting rooms and 24 hour computer lab, absolutely vital to me in my third and fourth year. It’s where we revised and wrote up our dissertations and basically got stuff done. I’m also extremely grateful for the University hardship fund, which provided much needed assistance in my third year when I had to give up my bar job to focus on my studies.
I loved living by the sea and all the opportunities to do water sports. I used to go sailing with my friends every Wednesday afternoon around Plymouth Sound. The University heavily subsidised water sports – it was brilliant!

Did Plymouth change your career aspirations and plans?

Yes! The staff in the geology department encouraged me to do a summer research project; this led to me presenting my work at conferences, publishing data, and gave me my first taste of real scientific research. Their support and encouragement early on in my degree has helped shape my entire career.
In a real world sense, Plymouth is where I finally learned how to function as an adult. 

Career highlight?

In 2015 I sailed for eight weeks on an International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) expedition in the Indian Ocean. The aim of the expedition was to collect sediment cores that would tell us about the history of the Himalayas and Asian monsoon. I was one of the scientists responsible for dating the sediments we recovered using microfossils. I later got to do fieldwork in the Himalayan Mountains too! 

Inspired by this story?

For more information about studying MGeol Geology, please visit our MGeol Geology page. For more information about our range of courses within the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, please visit the school page.

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Research student stood on Mount Etna, on a geology field trip.