Dr Cindy Gray, Institute of Health and Wellbeing

‘Make the most of all the opportunities available to you during the fellowship. The scheme gives you unequalled freedom to build your reputation as a world-class, independent researcher.’

Image of Dr Cindy Gray giving a lectureAfter her PhD in cognitive neuroscience, Cindy moved into the field of health behaviour change and established a track record of working to engage hard-to-reach groups in making sustainable positive lifestyle changes.

Cindy’s career has gone from strength to strength thanks to her LKAS Fellowship. The fellowship gave Cindy the opportunity to establish a research group by applying for research grants as Principal Investigator, proving her effectiveness as a research leader. Her most notable success was securing National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) funding to conduct a long-term follow up of participants in the Football Fans in Training men-only weight loss and healthy living programme delivered through professional football clubs. The follow up study is one of the first long term follow ups of weight loss in men, and has important implications for national and international obesity strategies.

Keen to advance her teaching to prepare for the hoped-for post-fellowship transition to lectureship, Cindy took over Convenorship of the MSc in Global Health towards the end of her fellowship. She also developed a Masters-level course on the development and evaluation of complex interventions (her research expertise).

Cindy had two mentors during her fellowship, and credits them both for helping her advance her academic career. ‘I was extremely fortunate to be mentored by two colleagues who I trusted and respected.  Their advice was invaluable in guiding me to new opportunities to build my career and support my transition to lecturer’.

Find out more about Cindy at http://www.gla.ac.uk/researchinstitutes/healthwellbeing/staff/cindygray/

Research area: Cindy’s research interests are in exploring the potential of community organisations, such as professional sports clubs (e.g. football and rugby clubs), bingo clubs, and prisons, to deliver health behaviour change interventions that are attractive and acceptable to at-risk groups. She is also interested in the integration of social scientific theory with developments in digital technologies (e.g., mobile phone apps) to promote sustained positive health behaviours.

First published: 11 May 2017