Sophie Bellow

MQ Project Coordinator – HOPES

What current Projects/Studies are you are involved with?
I am the Project Coordinator for the HOPES project (Help Overcome & Predict the Emergence of Suicide). The HOPES project seeks to identify changes in the brain that could make young people vulnerable to suicidal thoughts and behaviours.
Please tell us about your background
After completing my college studies in travel and tourism, I had the realisation that I didn’t particularly want to work in the world of travel. I did, however, want to travel the world! In between worldly adventures I found I posses strong organisation, communication, and creative skills and enjoy to work in roles where I can exercise this. I have now attained almost 15 years’ experience in administrative and leadership roles gained within NHS hospital and education settings, community psychiatric services, and now, the University of Cambridge. I have also completed PRINCE2 (Projects In Controlled Environments) foundation and practitioner training.
What inspires you to come to work/placement?
My work is challenging and rewarding and the project I am involved with has the potential to make a real difference to people’s lives. I find this hugely inspiring. I also love working with such a diverse group of people. Hearing and learning about other countries and cultures fascinates me. I mean, who knew viking-metal is a genre of music?!
Please tell us about one thing you are proud of professionally
In my previous role with Health Education England my team won a regional award for innovation and improvement. An initiative I championed and personally improved played a major part in winning the award. It also made the application process for junior doctors wanting to work part time, far less restrictive and cumbersome.
Please tell us about one thing you are proud of personally
I once created a 30 second advert for a Walkers crisps competition and won £1000!
What’s great about working and living in Cambridge?
The people, the history, the colleges (Harry Potter fans will not be disappointed), the cosy pubs, the food and, of course, the punts. There is also an abundance of opportunity to attend a variety of educational talks and symposia. And if you ever fancy indulging in the delights of the capital, London is only a short 45 minute train ride away.
Describe the life of a project coordinator in 3 words