Meeting 1: A biochemist in the House of Lords

My first meeting with Baroness Massey was on Thursday 9 November 2017. We had originally arranged to meet on three occasions before this but she is a very busy lady. This year she is on a European council so is flying back and forth a lot. It made me appreciate her time even more!

I met her at the House of Lords which was an amazing experience. It’s like visiting a film set, but better. I had the opportunity to sit in on a debate which went completely over my head (I’m studying biochemistry, okay?). The Baroness gave me a short tour which consisted of many corridors with lots of grand paintings on the wall. I found it fascinating that she knew personally many of the people on the walls.

We drank tea at a table overlooking the Thames. I was struck by how friendly a lady with so much power and knowledge could be. Baroness Massey knew all the waitresses by name and they gave us an extra packet of biscuits. I was very relaxed and at ease despite being in the presence of so many influential people. We chatted for a while about my hobbies and interests. We even exchanged phone numbers for the future. This lady is 89 and she is better at technology than both of my parents!

The main thing I took away from my meeting with the Baroness is that I don’t need to make any big decisions about my future right now. I tend to get worried if I don’t have a 5 year plan in place at any given time, and she explained to me, using her own experiences, that people change all the time. In one year I might be somewhere I never expected to be. I know what I want to do when I graduate and I can take it one step at a time.

Our next meeting is planned for Thursday 11 January and we are going to go over my personal statement for the PGCE I am applying for (September 2018 entry). I am excited to hear more about her career path and her role in the upcoming Brexit negotiations!

Eleanor Lewis


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