The prestigious Sclumberger Foundation Faculty for the Future Fellowship awards support women scientists and engineers from developing countries to undertake a PhD abroad. The students then return to their home countries with the aim of leading future research activities and building up associated groups.

Tsoogii Saizmaa currently holds a faculty position at the National University of Mongolia (NUM) and lectures in mathematics. However, she does not have a PhD in mathematics and has always longed to study the subject more deeply. In the summer of 2015 she co-organised a conference in Mongolia with SAMBa co-Director Andreas Kyprianou who recognised her talent and potential. This interaction developed into her being awarded a place in SAMBa, and the subsequent support from the Schlumberger Foundation.

The development of Mongolian mathematics was interrupted in the 1990s when the country abruptly abandoned communism with many leading academics leaving and the economy taking a severe downturn. Although things are now improving, it is important that academics are in place to lead future research in Mongolia. This is what Tsoogii hopes to be able to achieve following four years of study at Bath.

Tsoogii will travel to Bath with her husband and young son. We are looking forward to welcoming them all here and to working with Tsoogii to develop significant and lasting links with NUM and Mongolia more widely. She said, “I am so excited about joining SAMBa and moving to the UK. Doing research into probability has been a dream of mine for so long, I can’t believe it is finally happening. It has been wonderful to have the support of everyone in SAMBa to make it happen.”

Tsoogii will not be the only Faculty for the Future Fellow on campus next year; Pamela Amegbletor from Ghana will be joining the Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology to undertake a PhD with Ian Blagbrough.