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Wine tasting: women winemakers.


Don’t forget to book for our first event of the year: wine tasting. The theme will be women winemakers. It is a great opportunity to chat with and enjoy the company of other women who work in STEM and related areas.

The evening includes the tasting of several good quality wines, and some food (usually cheese, charcuterie, bread, and olives). With expert hosting by Cambridge Wine Merchants, whose wine tastings are fun, informal and informative, this will be a great evening.

You can download the poster here.



Book now:

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Book now:

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Winter networking 2016

Speed networking, stories of real-life professional women and mince pies. That could be a recap of the 2016 winter networking, but it was so much more.


Mince pies

During the speed networking, the room was filled with energy as attendees changed partner every five minutes. This allowed everybody to make more contacts and to hone their networking skills.


End of a five minutes segment.

After the networking, several members of the steering group talked about their professional careers. Although they all had different paths they all stressed the importance of doing what you enjoy and not what you are supposed to do


Julia Bardos


Anne Clarke

For all of them, CamAWiSE was very important in different stages of their career as a friendly and supportive group. Indeed, CamAWiSE is a good place to connect with professional women who share similar experiences, gain skills and increase your confidence.


Penny Coggill


Claire Lucas

We also had an impromptu speaker: Lucy Bennett, an engineering student who brought out the importance of having female role models for students like her.


Lucy Bennett

Thank you very much to all the speakers for sharing their experiences with us.

Meet the Steering Group – Claire Lucas

What is your current profession/background?

I am Information Services Manager at Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity, based just outside Cambridge. I manage a small team dedicated to providing high-quality, evidence-based health information about Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

I have always worked in scientific information, from the early days of online literature searching and information retrieval. My career path started with a chance encounter with online searching through a temporary job when I first moved to Cambridge. This led to roles with the Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre, the Royal Society of Chemistry and Cambridge Display Technology, and I also worked freelance for a number of years.

What point in your life led you to pursue a STEM career?

I fell into science by accident! I was heading for a career as a bilingual secretary when I discovered geology in the sixth form and fell in love with it! This was definitely partly due to a brilliant teacher, as is so often the case. From that point, despite having no previous science qualifications, I did everything I could to change direction and managed to persuade UEA to let me study for a degree in Environmental Science. I never looked back!

What is one of your biggest aspirations?

Having just been promoted into a management role for the first time in many years, for the moment I just want to get to grips with my new responsibilities and feel confident that I’m doing a good job.

What advice would you give to aspiring female scientists and engineers?

Don’t give up and don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. If you want something enough you will make it happen.

How have you benefited from being a part of CamAWiSE?

I joined CamAWiSE about four years ago when I was working freelance, and was delighted when shortly afterwards I had the opportunity to apply for the post of Coordinator for the organisation. My application was successful, and I spent a happy 18 months organising events, running the membership and meeting and greeting attendees at our events. This built my confidence in many ways and gave me new skills to add to my CV.

In 2014, having made the decision to terminate my freelance activities, I successfully applied for a full-time role with Alzheimer’s Research UK, and had to give up my Coordinator duties. Since then I’ve been a member of the Steering Group and have added further strings to my bow including becoming Co-chair.

In addition to developing new skills, I’ve made some great friends through CamAWiSE. It’s a very special organisation which provides a safe and supportive environment for women to learn, develop and network.

What do you like to do in your free time?

I love to be outside enjoying the sights and sounds of nature. I enjoy walking very much, though prefer somewhat more interesting landscapes than those found around Cambridge! I’m also a great fan of classical music and love to read when I have time.

Ask me about…..

Dementia; plants and horticulture; choral singing.

Getting noticed on LinkedIn

“I have attended events on LinkedIn before, but this workshop’s step-wise approach to building a meaningful and strong profile had much more impact”, said one attendee coming out of the CamAWiSE event. The ‘Getting noticed on LinkedIn’ workshop was conducted by Cathy Sorbara, COO of Cheeky Scientist and a steering group member of CamAWiSE. LinkedIn is proving to be a ‘must-have’ social presence for professional growth whether to seek job opportunities or to build your brand. 

Cathy asked the attendees to consider questions like –

  • What is the goal of your LinkedIn profile?
  • Who is your target audience (hiring manager or business partner?)
  • If someone doesn’t know your name, what keywords might they use which would lead them to your profile?


Cathy emphasised making use of the headline and summary space to create a crisp account of your achievements and aspirations. The headline, she explained, should use your transferable and technical skills to define you as a person. Make a connection with the viewer using an elevator pitch! The summary should not be a resumé–like account but an expression or narration of your aspirations. List the achievements that relate to those goals in a manner that stimulates the viewer to connect and find out more about you. Visual assets including PowerPoint presentations, links to blogs, pdf files, and pictures can be added to reinforce your achievements and the trajectory you aspire to.

img_4458-copyRecommendations and skills endorsements from connections (usually colleagues) are important ways to build credibility and increase profile views. Cathy added: “Everybody has transferable skills, even if they don’t know it, and these skills are in popular demand over technical ones”. Your profile photo must be high-quality and professional-looking, while a background photo is a great way to give further weight to the image you would like to promote. Volunteer experiences and publicising your interests by content sharing are great ways to connect to your target audience and showcase your communication and knowledge-based skills.

When requesting connections, it is more rewarding and respectful to personalise the standard message provided by LinkedIn. You can refer to a common interest or connection, for example, but keep to no more than 50 words.


A great profile will help you begin to capitalise on the most powerful online networking tool in the world that is used by 98% of recruiters. However, networking on LinkedIn is the next essential step to connect directly with target viewers and their secondary connections, helping you build a strong network which enhances profile visibility. Other social media platforms like Twitter, as well as in-person networking, also play an important role. Let’s connect!

by Ruchi Chauhan

Deborah Pardo and CamAWiSE

The Homeward Bound Project is an extraordinary leadership and strategic initiative. It aims to enhance the influence and impact of women in science to ensure the sustainability of our beautiful planet.

This year-long state of the art program will see 77 women scientists from around the globe develop their leadership, strategic and scientific capabilities with a focus on climate, biological and earth system research. The program will culminate in an expedition to Antarctica.

Deborah Pardo, who is part of the expedition, explains in the video below how she managed to raise the funds and how CamAWiSE helped her do it.

Although I recommend the whole video you can skip to minute 3:54, where she starts talking about CamAWiSE.

Congratulations Deborah!

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