Goodbye and good luck to DPRC Clinical Research Nurse Karen Smith

Goodbye and good luck to DPRC Clinical Research Nurse Karen Smith
Goodbye and good luck to DPRC Clinical Research Nurse Karen Smith

After six years of living in New Zealand and making her mark on dementia and stroke research in Aotearoa, Clinical Research Nurse Karen Smith will be heading back to her original home in the UK to pursue a new and exciting role in South Gloucestershire at the 2gether Foundation Trust. Karen has been an invaluable part of the growth of the clinics here in New Zealand and she will be dearly missed by everyone. 


"I have loved working with many incredible people here at both the Dementia Prevention Research Clinic and the Stroke Research Clinic at the University of Auckland. Having the opportunity work with Professor Richard Faull has been a dream come true for me. I also have to give enormous thanks to Associate Professor Cathy Stinear. I originally applied for a post within Cathy’s team but was unsuccessful, however Cathy kept me in mind for a future position which is the one I have had for over two years. Without her I wouldn’t be in this role. Also Associate Professor Lynette Tippett who is incredibly passionate about what she does. All three of them have been incredible to work with."


"Everyone at the Centre for Brain Research and Brain Research New Zealand has made me feel welcomed and valued. Participants at the clinics were also a joy to work with. They are willing to give of their time and their energy and they are happy to volunteer themselves. Working with the clinic participants has been overwhelmingly positive and humbling for me."


"The part that I’ve enjoyed the most has been community engagement. I’ve met so many interesting people along the way who are so passionate about what they do, helping and supporting people with dementia, stroke, Alzheimers and in the area of health for older people in general. All of this bodes well for the future of people in Auckland and New Zealand."


What’s coming up next for you? 


"After six years in New Zealand I am heading back to my original home in the UK. I will be starting in a new role in South Gloucestershire at the 2gether Foundation Trust of South Gloucestershire in the Cotswalds region. They support people living with dementia to live as long as possible in the home that they choose. They have a brand new dementia research centre there and it looks like a really exciting role. Along with doing that I’m looking forward to catching up again with family and friends and to trying some real ale pubs in South Gloucestershire."


Best of luck in your future role Karen. It has been an absolute pleasure having you here working with us and many people in both the Centre for Brain Research (CBR), Brain Research New Zealand (BRNZ) and most importantly your clinic participants will all miss you!