Yiwei Zhang

Yiwei ZhangGraduate role: Research Fellow, University of St Andrews

Yiwie studied photovoltaics at the University of Sheffield as a PhD student supervised by Professor David Lidzey, and now works a researcher at a top university.

"I belong to the Organic Semiconductor Centre at the University of St Andrews. We investigate the physical properties of organic semiconductor and develop optoelectronics devices to broaden its application.

"My daily work is doing research in experimental physics, specialising in optoelectronics of organic semiconductors. I read scientific papers, and design and conduct scientific experiments. As a postdoctoral researcher, I also take part in the administration work of our labs.

"The thing I enjoy most as a researcher is trying different things without knowing the results, and trying to link the experimental results with my knowledge. Another good thing is that I have the chance to collaborate with people from different countries and keep learning from them.

"When I was a PhD student I was doing similar work and I enjoyed it. After obtaining the degree, it was a natural choice for me to continue my research career. I think I received a lot of support from the University of Sheffield. Without the support from my department and my research group, I could not have got the job. And even after I left Sheffield, I still got the chance to collaborate with my group in Sheffield, which I really appreciated.

"When I was deciding which university to go to for my PhD, my supervisor, Professor David Lidzey, was the reason I decided to come to Sheffield. He is a distinguished researcher in my field, organic solar cells. I think I made a good choice as Sheffield is a very nice city and the people are so friendly, my experience inside and outside the labs were both excellent.

"The degree was essential for me to get my current job. I think I will stay in academia, so the degree will be important in my future career as well. Especially for a Chinese citizen, holding a PhD degree from a World Top 100 university helps a lot."

On our our MSc Solar Cell Technology course, we're training physical science and engineering graduates to develop new photovoltaic devices and test their effectiveness as a global energy resource:

MSc Solar Cell Technology