Emily Rickman

Department of Physics and Astronomy

MPhys Physics

Emily Rickman

What subjects did you study at A-Level?

Physics, Maths and Philosophy A-levels and Chemistry at AS-level

How did you decide which degree course to take?

I’ve always been interested in science, in particular physics, so I knew that I wanted to study a degree in physics. I chose astrophysics as, for me, that’s the part that I find most interesting and I'd like to continue into a career related to astrophysics. I also chose a degree with a study abroad element as it gives me the opportunity to go to a different university for a year and obtain some amazing experiences. I'm going to study in Australia next year which will give me an opportunity to use their telescopes in an environment with limited light pollution.

Which part of your course have you enjoyed most so far?

I have really enjoyed learning how to computer program, and then putting it to use in mapping the internal structure of the Sun. A big difference between university and school is that when you learn new things, you instantly put them into use and you can see how they tie into the real world. Just like mapping the internal structure of the Sun, which has helped us to understand the science which is now used in mobile phones!

 What has been the highlight so far of your time at university?

The highlight for me was spending the night in the telescope on the roof of the Physics building and observing a cluster of stars. It was amazing to get some first-hand experience in doing observations and using the telescope, then going away and writing the findings up in a report.

What are your plans for the future?

I hope to do a PhD in Physics and continue in research and lecturing. I would love to be an astronaut one day, so stay tuned!

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