Namibian (Southern African)
Education and career
Lela is currently a Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience (BSc) at the University of Nottingham (ongoing). I am hoping to specialise into neuropsychology and eventually study oceanography.
I have always enjoyed the complexity the sciences have always had to offer. Psychology is such a young discipline where society often represents as 'knowing all the answers' however, we have barely scratched the surface. There is so much to understand about our cognitive interactions with the world and other human beings. There is a range of sub-disciplines in psychology that open different doors of the human psyche. There is clinical psychology, forensics, sports, neurorehabilitation, industrial and more.
Tell us about a pivotal moment in your career
The most crucial moment would have to be my choice to study psychology in particular. It wasn't the greatest conversation to have with elders who have only seen limited opportunities for this field so admittedly I didn't blame them too much. It was a long fight and at some point, I thought for a second whether this dream was worth fighting my family for when we could just be at peace if I could study an arguably 'more lucrative' profession. I'm glad the thought did exist for only a second because I did believe in the profession I was heading into and was not willing to take no for an answer. My perseverance paid off cause I am now studying psychology with cognitive neuroscience, at one of the most prestigious universities in the UK and my parents have seen the endless opportunities here, couldn't be more proud of me.
I hope to get my doctorate in clinical psychology and specialise in neuropsychology. I also have an interest in getting a forensic related masters after my degree and I am looking at studying the ocean to rehabilitate our waters.
I haven't had a particular person but rather seeing people from different walks of life simply embrace what they believe is right for their lives, has inspired me to choose what I please to enhance my own life. Those are the people I owe for where I am today.
Outside of your scientific career, what are your interests, hobbies and aims?
I love makeup and skincare and could be considered an addict. I have a YouTube channel that involves discussing life essentials and some profound philosophical questions /concepts. This means I enjoy video concept designs and editing. I also enjoy keeping fit and understanding my personality and self very deeply to better care for what I need.
Why did you join the Black Women in Science Network?
I joined because this the first time I've seen someone create a space for a rarity of people where we can not only connect with each other but know that we as black women, are not walking this science road alone but have other strong-minded, intelligent women at our disposal ready to uplift us where we need it. This is empowerment.
What advice would you give to other black women in science?
Be bold and relentless for what you believe in. The scientific field YOU choose is important, no matter what other people think about your chosen discipline. If you see growth, opportunity and most importantly enjoyment in the field, then go for it with all your heart and don't look back. One day, they might get it or maybe they never will and that's okay.
Instagram is my online home so have a knock and check if I'm there! Keep in touch with me @t.ea.a on Instagram.