Portrait Polina merkulova

Polia Merkulova

What is it that makes you passionate about your area of study?

My undergraduate degree was in Counselling Psychology but while at university I became interested in the history of psychology and mental health, and wrote my dissertation on the history of hypnotic treatments. 

I think the history of science and medicine is incredibly interesting! I am a firm believer that knowing history provides us with useful insights into our present and sometimes even future.

My training as a mental health professional made me aware about a lot of challenges and problems that exist in the mental health care globally. I hoped that my research would contribute to solving these issue and improving the situation. 

What aspects of the course did you enjoy the most? 

The whole course was like an entry into a new and fascinating world. I especially enjoyed the stimulating discussions in all the classes I took, the amazing friendly atmosphere in the department and the support and guidance I received from all my teachers and supervisors. MA History of Science, Technology and Medicine is a great course – it’s challenging and demanding but very interesting. On the course you become a part of an amazing academic community which will stimulate, support and nurture you as a researcher and as a person. 

What do you plan to do now you’ve finished your course, and how do you think the skills and knowledge you’ve developed at Leeds will help with these plans?

Now that I’ve finished my MA, I have continued straight to my PhD and I am aiming for an academic career. The MA was a perfect springboard for my current research: it helped me acquire necessary research skills, allowed me to discover my own academic interests and provided great role models.