Five years ago, Joseph Polidano quit his accounting job and enrolled at VU in pursuit of a career in health and fitness.
An impeccable academic record combined with encouragement from VU lecturers landed him in a project that ignited his passion for cancer research.
"The labs and lecture theatres at VU were state-of-the-art, and I felt privileged to have had access to it all. The best thing about my degree, though, was the lecturing staff. They were passionate, motivated, and left a lasting impression on me.
Earlier this year, I was awarded ‘Most Outstanding Final Year Student’ of my degree. VU also granted me a summer research scholarship, which enabled me to undertake paid research during the summer break. Along with my excellent academic record, I consider these to be my greatest achievements so far.
During my undergraduate degree, my lecturers encouraged me to complete a research project in my final semester. I did so at the Western Centre for Health Research and Education (WCHRE), where I looked at a protein known to up-regulate cancer-promoting genes. I developed valuable laboratory skills and gained a fascinating insight into the world of cancer molecular biology. This experience inspired me to pursue honours and a PhD in the same field. I’m currently finalising my honours thesis, and will commence my PhD shortly.
I feel lucky to have received the opportunity to expand on the exciting work from my undergraduate research project. I started off wanting a career in health and fitness, but this is the field I now see myself in. I’m determined to make a career as a university academic and researcher."