Leading Speakers

Be inspired

By leading speakers

In the We Speak Science program, participants have the unique opportunity to study STEM at university-level programmes that are designed and taught by expert academics from world-leading universities.

We inspire and encourage students to go beyond the boundaries of the school curriculum and immerse themselves in new, challenging curricula and find STEM solutions to key problems the world faces nowadays.

Every year, we are delighted to welcome motivational guest speakers from the world’s most prestigious universities and industries to share their knowledge, advice, and words of wisdom to inspire students to succeed.

Dr Argita D

Dr. Argita earned her PhD at the University of Birmingham, UK. Her research investigated the effects of two agonists on immune function with the goal of better understanding how stress affects the ability of the cytotoxic cells of the immune system to fight infection. Following her PhD, Dr. Argita carried out her postdoctoral research training at University College London, where she published several high-impact scientific journals in the field of psychology whilst collaborating with world-leading scientists, including a Nobel Prize winner.

While conducting scientific research, Argita also worked as a lecturer as she designed, taught, and directed several biomedical sciences courses for medical students. Argita was awarded the UCL medical students’ top teaching award for the neuro-immunology course she designed, delivered, and directed. After completing her first post-doc training, Dr.

Argita moved to Imperial College London, where she conducted medical research in the field of haematology. Her passion for higher education teaching led Dr. A Zalli to complete her MSc studies in University Learning and Teaching at Imperial College London, whilst working full time and being a mum. Over the past couple of years, Dr. Argita has focused on teaching and pedagogical training of university teaching staff, and she is currently a teaching and learning specialist lead in the Faculty of Medicine, clinical years. Dr. Argita is also the co-founder of We Speak Science, a non-profit institution, the aim of which is to increase awareness of science and medicine in the USA and Europe. Through We Speak Science, Dr. Argita co-founded a charity called “Aferdita Ime,” in collaboration with other world-class oncologists and scientists, whose aim is to help cancer patients through psycho-social support and counselling.

Dr Argita co-founded a charity called “Aferdita Ime”, in collaboration with other world-class oncologists and scientists, whose aim is to help cancer patients through psycho-social support and counselling.

Afshin B, Ph.D

Dr. Afshin completed his PhD at Florida State University in physics and made a transition to cancer, systems biology, space biology, and radiation biology for his postdoctoral training. In 2014, he became an Assistant Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine/Tufts Medical Center where he continued his research as a systems biologist studying various aspects of cancer, including microRNAs, ageing and cancer, cancer drug targets, and the development of novel immunotherapy. In April 2017, Dr. Beheshti joined KBR and NASA Ames Research Center to be part of the GeneLab project, assisting with developing the platform.

In addition, Dr. Beheshti also has obtained his own grants where he is conducting research on how microRNAs and mitochondria will affect space biology, lymphoma, COVID-19 and potential use for countermeasures/therapeutics to mitigate these diseases and responses. Lastly, Dr. Beheshti currently also holds a Visiting Researcher appointment at Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and is the Lead of a non-profit formed on March 2020 working on COVID-19 called COVID-19 International Research Team (COV-IRT, www.cov-irt.org)

Daniel Wise, Ph.D.

Dr Daniel Wise completed his Bsc and MRes at the university of Exeter, where he specialized in plant-pathogen interactions and found a passion for Immunological research. Daniel spent a number of years as a researcher at the Institute of Metabolic sciences (IMS), Cambridge Institute of Medical Research (CIMR) and the Department of Pathology (University of Cambridge); where he investigated novel innate immune signaling, endoplasmic stress responses and antigen processing, presentation and recognition.

Daniel completed his PhD and postdoctoral studies at the University of Cambridge department of Pathology, specializing in MHC-mediated immunity. During this time, he established and conducted collaborative research projects with the Gurdon Institute, Cambridge veterinary school, Roslin Institute, Technical University of Munich, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich and Institute of Molecular Genetics (Czech Academy of Sciences).

Following his PhD Daniel was awarded a Fellowship at the Technical University of Munich before moving into scientific Industry, where he worked in drug discovery and PROTAC drug
development before switching to R&D in the field of diagnostics. Currently Daniel is Laboratory Director at EDX medical and the Chief Scientific Officer at Origin Sciences, where he leads the development of new oncology diagnostic methods.

Keti Zeka, Ph.D.

Dr Zeka received her PhD in “Chemical Processes and Biotechnology Innovation” from L’Aquila University, in Italy, having investigated bioactive compounds in Crocus sativus. During the course of her PhD research, she actively sought and set up international collaborations, with placements in Japan and at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK, which resulted in original and review publications.

At the end of her PhD, Keti followed her developing interest in regenerative medicine and cancer and had the initiative to join the world-renowned Gurdon laboratory on an Erasmus+ fellowship for 6 months, where she had the chance to be acquire knowledge and expertise in epigenetics of nuclear reprogramming.

While studying chromatin modifiers, Dr Zeka became increasingly interested in these molecules’ capacity to catalyse post-translational modifications in non-histone proteins and how this activity may extend and complement their range of targets and effects at the level of chromatin.

Keti’s research at the University of Cambridge (UK) focused on the cross-talk between epigenetics and metabolism in Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). Her studies have been supported by prestigious personal fellowships such as the Italian Association for Cancer Research (AIRC, 2016-2017), the Marie Curie Individual Fellowship (2018-2020) and the Cambridge Philosophical Society Postdoctoral Fellowship (2020). Since December 2020, Keti’s scientific curiosity has driven her postdoctoral journey to the Giustacchini Lab, at the UCL Zayed Centre for Research, to work on paediatric leukemic stem cells.

The importance of Keti’s project has been recognised through the prestigious award “Olivia Hodson Cancer Fund 2021”, a special purpose Fund within Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity and the UCL institute of Child Health. Furthermore, Keti is an active member of the Institute as she is part of the GOSH BRC Junior Faculty and Child Health Open Research Advisory Board.

Andrea Troso

Andrea Troso started his flight training aged 13 years old out of Cranfield Airport in the UK, England. He continued his passion for flying and willingness to pursue a career in Aerospace when he joined the Royal Air Force Air Cadets (RAFAC) in 2014 where he served for 5 years. He continued his studies in Aeronautical Engineering at the Milton Keynes College of Innovation and Technology where he graduated with a Diploma in June 2021. Andrea has experience in the sector of aircraft engineering as well, having volunteered his services to a small operation out of Turweston Aerodrome, England, UK where they look after the maintenance of vintage and warbird aircraft, and he has also previously been a bicycle mechanic as well much following in the steps of the Wright Brothers

In addition, he completed a Gliding Scholarship with the Honourable Guild of Air Pilots and Navigators in Conjunction with the Derbyshire gliding club in Peak District where he spent a summer gliding and learning the pure form of stick and rudder flying completing 15 winch launches in his week stay. The experience he has built over the years around aircraft and learning to fly earned him a place on the Sir Geoffrey De Havilland Flying Scholarship which was awarded to Andrea by the Coachmakers Company and the Cambridge Flying Group in October 2021 where he is now learning to fly the all-important vintage tiger moth DH82 out of Cambridge Airport towards his Private Pilot Licence (PPL). He has worked at Cranfield University in the Aerospace Integration and Research centre, specifically the Intelligence Automation lab, where he looked after student on the Robotics MSc course at the university and operated a variety of Robots and Experiments.

Finally his studies will be continued onwards as he has been offered a place at Kingston University in London to pursue a Bachelors Degree in Aviation Engineering and he shall commence his studies here in September 2022.

What students are saying

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I loved the way the group discussions were held. It gave us an opportunity to learn how to lead and work in teams of students from different backgrounds whilst using critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Fiorella A
Attended We Speak Science in 2021
STEM course

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Lectures That Last?
Lectures That Last are a series of 15-minute lectures aimed at inspiring students all over the world, with a particular focus on students with low socio-economic status. Here, world-renowned scientists and professors from the world’s most prestigious universities and industries share their knowledge, advice, and words of wisdom to inspire students to succeed.
How do you choose guest speakers?
Our academic staff select speakers who will encourage, inspire, and enthuse our programme participants, despite the fact that we have no official strategy for selecting guest speakers. To deliver a well-rounded and life-changing educational experience, we believe in presenting students with a diverse range of ideas, experiences, and backgrounds.
Will we be able to ask the guest speakers questions?
Our guest speakers are very welcoming, and they are very happy to take questions. However, this is entirely up to the individual speaker and their schedule.

Learn directly from world-leading academics

You will learn about cutting-edge STEM research and explore novel concepts and ideas in small groups of like-minded and ambitious students from around the world. Our average class size consists of seven students.

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