Welcome to UMAN, Martin!

Martin Power will be joining the Leigh group at the University of Manchester in September 2020 as an Early Stage Researcher. In the framework of the ArtMoMa network, Martin will spend 3 years working on Synthesis and catalysis with molecular robots, while participating in many training and network events. Read the following introduction to get to know him:

Tell us about more your background!

I am 24 years old and from a small seaside town in the south-east of Ireland called Tramore. After finishing secondary school there, I went to Trinity College Dublin where I studied Chemistry and obtained my bachelor’s degree. While studying at Trinity I developed an interest in supramolecular chemistry, and I continued my education at the University of Strasbourg, where I received a master’s degree in complex systems chemistry. During this time I did an internship with Prof. Nicolas Giuseppone from the ArtMoMa ITN, which gave me a chance to work on molecular machines. Having enjoyed working on the topic I decided to pursue a Ph.D. in the area, and here we are now!

Why did you want to be a part of ArtMoMa?

I have always found the field of molecular machines to be fascinating and have been reading papers on the subject since I started my bachelor’s degree. Similarly, I have always been a fan of the work of Prof. Leigh and the other professors involved in the ITN, so when I heard about it, I knew I had to apply. The connections with industry and the system of secondments are also very appealing to me, as I always relish the opportunity to work in other countries or in new labs.

What are your expectations of living and working in your host city?

I love Manchester, and I have a lot of friends and family that live in the city, so I am looking forward to moving there. I have visited a few times and always enjoyed the vibrant cultural scene there, with many of my favorite musicians having come from the city. There is a thriving student culture in and around the University, which I am looking forward to experiencing. Last but not least, I am a huge Manchester United fan so I will jump at any opportunity be near the famous football club.

What do you think will be your main challenge for you in the next three years?

As we all know we are living in very uncertain times with the COVID-19 pandemic, and the UK has been hit quite hard so moving to a new country and starting in a new workplace in the current climate might be a bit challenging. However, I am sure the University has measures put in place to help new postgraduate students with this, so it is not a major worry.  Apart from this, I am lucky to be a native English speaker and have grown up just across the Irish sea, so moving to Manchester will not be difficult for me. Of course, a Ph.D. is a big challenge and will require lots of hard work, but I am motivated and looking forward to the next three years to see what I and the others in ArtMoMa can achieve.