University students receive hefty scholarship to study at Cambridge

26 September 2019

Emma Walker and Thomas Archbold
Emma Walker (left) and Thomas Archbold (right) have both received the Woolf Fisher Scholarship estimated at $300,000 each.

Two University of Waikato students have landed a substantial scholarship that has opened the door to the University of Cambridge.

Science student Emma Walker, and engineering graduate Thomas Archbold, have each been awarded the Woolf Fisher Scholarship to study at Cambridge next year.

The scholarship, which covers study and living costs, is estimated at $300,000 each.

Walker, who is currently studying a Master of Science in molecular and cellular biology, is planning to pursue a PhD at Babraham Institute – a partner institute of Cambridge.

She will be working with Dr Simon Cook, Head of Babraham Institute’s Knowledge Exchange and Commercialisation Programme, focusing on the DYRK protein kinases in health and disease.

Walker is looking forward to commencing her research, and says the scholarship is a step towards her goal of combating cancer in New Zealand.

“My ultimate career goal is to significantly improve cancer statistics in New Zealand,” says Emma.

“Public engagement, scientific communication, and knowledge exchange are key skills that will undeniably help me in this.

“The key to understanding lifelong health is to understand the signaling pathways that operate inside cells – this summarises Dr Cook’s research.

“So, understanding how these pathways function and contribute to disease is fundamental to disease prevention, treatment, and improving the human health span.”

Fellow scholarship recipient Thomas Archbold, who graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering with Honours and a Masters of Engineering, will continue pursuing engineering at Cambridge.

“I wanted a project where I could use my analytical ability to challenge the ‘trial-and-error’ philosophy used in engineering design, and at the same time, find a good cause.

“With tools developed to optimise structures in a practical way, a more suitable alternative to ‘trial-and-error’ will exist, which may encourage designers to engineer lightweight structures.

“I sincerely believe New Zealand could become a world leader in the design of lightweight structures because we are committed to protecting our clean green image, and we have more scope for growth and improvement than the rest of the world.”

Sir Woolf Fisher (1912-1975), co-founder of Fisher and Paykel, set up his Trust in 1960 to recognise and reward excellence in education. Young New Zealanders are selected based on their outstanding academic ability, leadership potential, integrity, vision and capacity for work. They must also show how their research will benefit New Zealand.

Latest stories

Related stories

Two Engineering student groups named Callaghan Innovation C-Prize finalists

Two teams of Engineering students from the University of Waikato have been named as finalists…

Dr Jessica Pasisi

Research on climate change aims to give voice to Pacific people

A University of Waikato researcher says some of the current colonial representations of climate change…

University of Waikato Radiocarbon dating

Waikato researcher re-writing history of ancient human movement across the Pacific

A University of Waikato researcher is re-writing the history of ancient human movement across the…

Tom Shaw prize supports biological sciences

Remembering Tom Shaw: Family gift supports biological sciences students

To remember their brother Tom, the Shaw brothers and their parents established the Tom Shaw…

2020 New Professors

University of Waikato announces new professorial appointments

Vice-Chancellor Professor Neil Quigley has recently acknowledged new Professors and Associate Professors of the University.

Maui Hudson

Indigenous genomics under the microscope at SING conference

The University of Waikato is hosted the first ever SING Indigenous Genomics Conference as international…


Tech for good: Waikato alumni developing software to benefit local communities

Two University of Waikato graduates are putting their tech skills to use for the greater…

It's time to care about our insects

Dr Chrissie Painting, along with 70 other researchers from 21 countries, are calling for immediate…

Waikato Alumni and former staff recognised in 2020 New Year Honours

Six University of Waikato alumni and former academic staff members have been recognised for their…

University education researchers receive over $822,000 in research funding

Three research projects involving Waikato researchers have received funding from the Teaching and Learning Research…

RH Innovation

Student-owned agri-tech startup gains business boost from Microsoft

A student-based agri-tech startup company that has developed an inventive way to measure moisture, salinity…

Louis Schipper & Vic Arcus

Waikato researchers aim to find out what happens to life as the world heats up

A large research project that seeks to understand how biology responds to increasing temperature could…