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UCD Biological Society George Sigerson Award March 2022

  • 26 April 2022

UCD Biological Society Presents: The George Sigerson Award for Inspiring Aspiring Scientists 2022: Prof Teresa Lambe OBE

The George Sigerson Award for Inspiring Aspiring Scientists is an annual award given by the UCD Biological Society and aims to honour the progress and sacrifice made by an exemplary scientist to our understanding of the natural world. The work of the awarded person(s) must be breath-taking and inspirational to countless generations of scientists and impress the minds of undergraduate students. The award is named in honour of Prof. George Sigerson who spent his life as a scientist and physician in Ireland and abroad, and was a well respected author and poet.

This year, the Society presented Prof. Teresa Lambe OBE from the University of Oxford for her work on co-developing the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine (ADZ1222). The story of the ADZ1222 is one of hardship and perseverance and is a testament to the virility required by a research scientist to pursue that which is thought impossible. Prof. Lambe OBE is also focused on developing vaccines for other infectious diseases like Zaire Ebolavirus using the same adenoviral-vector system. This work is done despite concurrent shortcomings of funding for infectious diseases that do not affect the ‘Western’ world, and without which we would be one vaccine short against a disease that fundamentally changed our society.

The event was sponsored by Women in Technology and Science Ireland (WITS), College of Science, and School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Sciences. Given the history of success of previous George Sigerson ceremonies, and considering the popularity of discussing immunisation-related issues, this event was expected to be monumental, which we are proud to say we achieved. On 24th March 2022, Prof. Lambe OBE was due to come to UCD to receive her award in-person, however due to COVID-19, she was unable to attend. We switched to Zoom, and are delighted with the success and traction the event gained.

Through this event, we believe that we can inspire and motivate aspiring female scientists all around the world to take part in STEM events and further their interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Fatima Butt, President of UCD Biological Society, 2021/2022