Last month, we headed to Cambridge, where the lovely Lucy Cavendish College opened its doors to us. Students, Fellows and Professors, meanwhile, opened their minds to the What I See Project.
We were thrilled to meet so many amazing women – and what better time to share their stories with you than during ambition month. Many members of Lucy Cavendish juggle their studies with motherhood, and Dr Nathalie Vriend is no exception..
Nathalie is a Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin fellow – that's a fellowship specifically for people who need a flexible working pattern, like herself.
Nathalie's ambition is shared between her children and her work. 'I'm a proud mum-of-two… and I'm also a very ambitious scientist, and I'm trying to combine the two goals in my life.' When we asked her what happiness meant for her, she replied: 'That combination of being successful in my work and being successful as a mum is happiness and fulfillment.'
What's her secret? 'You need to be courageous, and you need to take risks, because if you don't take them you don't get the opportunities… if you dive in and try something, you discover that you can do more than you originally thought.'
'I sometimes need to think back on what I've already achieved, and what is still out there, what I could achieve in the future… and if I keep that in mind, a smile appears on my face.'
We're smiling too – thanks to Nathalie for the most feel-good interview of all time. Feeling inspired? It's not over yet – stay tuned for next week, when we'll be premiering our interview with Barbara-Ann King, Head of Female Clients at Barclays Bank. And don't forget to listen to our podcast of our panel discussion on why ambition is still a dirty word for women in the meantime.