Alumna profile: Catalina Vallejos
As a postdoctoral researcher at EMBL-EBI and the MRC Biostatistics Unit, Catalina developed statistical methods in the context of single-cell mRNA-sequencing experiments. After finishing her postdoc in the Marioni group, in September 2016, Catalina joined The Alan Turing Institute, the UK’s national institute for data science, as part of its first cohort of Research Fellows. More recently, Catalina also joined the Turing-Lloyd’s Register Foundation programme on Data-Centric Engineering as a Group Leader.
“I joined EMBL-EBI after following a traditional career path in statistics,” explains Catalina. “Suddenly, I was working with people from very different backgrounds and I could see how my research fits into the bigger picture. That’s when I seriously started thinking about how my work could be used to solve real-life challenges.
“Now I’m taking this approach even further. My group will develop statistical methodology for predictive monitoring of complex systems – this is all about being able to anticipate when something is likely to break, and fixing it before it does. We envisage building methods that could be used for a range of applications, from engineering to personalised medicine.
“My EMBL-EBI postdoc was an incredible opportunity to work with interesting people who are top experts in their field. It opened my mind to new possibilities. My job is now in London, but I still live in Cambridge and collaborate with my two postdoc groups, mentoring extensions of my previous research. It’s amazing to see people building on your work to make new discoveries.”
About the EMBL Alumni Programme
The EMBL Alumni Relations program is built to advance EMBL and the relevance of life science research in the scientific community and society at large, by fostering connections between the Laboratory, its member states, current EMBL staff, the EMBL alumni and the public.