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Getting to know

Getting to know – Jun Liu

12 November 2020

Welcome to the first in our series of getting to know the MAGMA team. We are going to start with one of our newest members Dr Jun Liu.

What is your current role? Lecturer in Magnetics and Materials.

What does it involve? Applying for research grants, building and managing a research team, managing research projects. Teaching undergraduate and postgraduate modules, supervising research students.

What are the biggest challenges? In terms of research, the biggest challenge is to open a new research area and convince the funders to believe what I believe. To an early career academic, it is challenging to balance commitments between teaching and research.

Where are you from? I am originally from China and have settled in Coventry in England for five years.

How did you end up doing what you do? I developed keen interests in research during my master’s course in China and then the PhD in the UK. Since then I have been enjoying my research and pursuing a career in academia.

What’s the best thing about your work? You get to be the first one to figure things out. The eureka moments are priceless.

What attracted you to engineering? The beauty of the laws of physics and the elegance of the maths describing them.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work? Reading for leisure. Learning and practicing Chinese calligraphy. Listening to old music.

Was there a particular moment or person that inspired you in your career path? When I first saw astronauts in space on TV as a boy, I wanted to become one. I applied for a University that has best aeronautics in China. I ended up getting involved in research only remotely related to space. However, I believe that moment inspired me to become a scientist.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to do something similar? Follow you heart. It can be a long and lonely journey to explore a new area in science before you reach the rewarding and exciting part.