Hello everyone, I am Archana (she/her), and I am reading for a DPhil in Clinical Neurosciences at St Johns. I’m delighted to be taking on the role of Secretary for the Women’s Network!
Raised and schooled in Bangalore, India, I pursued higher education in Chennai, Boston and London before I moved to Oxford. I initially worked in neuroscience research at the University before deciding to stay back to pursue my doctoral studies in neurosciences here. I hold a BTech in Genetic Engineering and a Master’s in Human Molecular Genetics and have always been keen on research in the field of neurogenetics.
At present, I work on establishing a genotypic-phenotypic co-relation in PCDH19 epilepsy, a condition that predominantly affects girls in infancy, leaving them with clustering seizures which are difficult to treat. You can read more about my research here.
Apart from my research, I can mostly be found supporting women and women led causes in and around Oxford. I volunteer for a women’s charity in Oxford and am currently involved in the organisation of the Women’s Leadership Program 2022. Having been a Women’s Officer in the past, I am now the President of the St Johns College Middle Common Room (MCR).
Outside of my involvement at Johns, I am currently Vice President of events at the Oxford Women in Engineering, Science, and Technology (OxWEST) student society. I am passionate about opening the door for more women, especially those of colour and those from marginalised backgrounds, to enter careers in the field of STEM. As a woman in STEM, I recognise and appreciate that it is not a level playing field and am keen to do my bit to rectify this.
Being part of the women’s network is inspiring. I was raised by strong women like my own mother and grandmother who encouraged me to believe in myself, chase my dreams and overcome challenges. In a way, they were my Women’s Network growing up. I see the Women’s Network here as a collective of Johns women over the years, who look to encourage and empower current and future John’s women in accomplishing their goals, whatever they may, to the best of our ability. I could not be happier to be a part of this circle and do my bit.
In my spare time, I can be found reading a book or catching up with friends over a cup of coffee. I love travelling and taking photos everywhere I go, and I am looking forward to resuming that post-pandemic. On vacation, I am mostly found in my living room playing with my dogs Sasha and Striker.