Ella Smalley
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Ella Smalley

Science to make a difference

Honours Student (Neuroscience)
College of Health and Medicine, University of Tasmania

When I think about the human body, I think of all the cool things it can do and how we can overcome almost anything. Think of when you have a cold, you wake up feeling unwell and over the day you start to feel worse, and maybe you’ll feel sick for a few more days too – but then suddenly even if you do nothing, you start to get better.  People don’t stay sick with a cold forever because their body is able to fight off the infection on its own. A lot of the time you don’t need medicine, you just need to rely on your body to make you better. How cool is that!

When I was younger I used to watch crime shows with my mum, and I always would be so fascinated by all the information that you can gather from a person – from their hair, to their skin – down to their DNA. Humans are the most complicated machines in existence, and we still don’t understand how the human body works completely and how some people get diseases and sometimes they don’t get better from them.  This is when I was first exposed to science and how fascinating it is to learn new information to improve the overall health of the community.

I was younger than everyone else in my grade at school-  I finished college when I was 17 and knew straight away I wanted to get into my University studies and begin my career in science. I started with a Bachelor of Medical Research which I completed in 2017. I am currently completing my Honours year investigating how changes in blood flow and oxygen levels in the brain in newborns can cause illness.

I chose to study Medical Research because I wanted to make a difference, and through science I can do that. By understanding how the human body works, we can use this information to better the health of all Australians, and I am lucky to be able to study what I love.


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