E035 From PhD in Biotechnology to European Commission & European Food Safety Authority

Aleksandra Lewandowska is a PhD candidate at Universiteit Gent and Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Her joint PhD project combined genetics, plant physiology and biochemistry to understand how plants react to stress. After four years and long hours in the lab as well as in the greenhouse, she came to the conclusion that it’s time to look beyond the wetlab careers and think about the next steps.

Without even having to move countries, after her PhD funding finished, she was lucky to secure a place at the Blue Book traineeship scheme at the European Commission. While working in the Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, she had a look at the process of science-based policymaking, particularly related to Circular Economy. She now continues her EU institution journey during her internship at the European Food Safety Authority, where she is a part of the Emerging Risks team.

Aleksandra has been involved in various science outreach and communication activities since 2005. While she contemplated a full-time SciComm career, she now believes that any science-related job should include a communication component.