Dr Katya Dimitrova has recently moved from her home country of Bulgaria to the UK to study her second doctorate at Harper Adams University.
Dr Dimitrova was first introduced to the university in May earlier this year under a staff mobility agreement as part of the Erasmus programme. During her four-day visit, she toured the facilities, met with academic staff and provided a lecture on technology and manufacture of artisan Bulgarian cheese.
Following her visit, and continued communications with Dr Vasil Pirgozliev, the opportunity for a PhD in poultry nutrition came up at the university, which Dr Dimitrova decided to apply for and was selected.
She said: “I finished my first PhD in 2006.
“Since 2010, I’ve been working as an assistant professor in dairy technology and also in microbiology at Agricultural University Plovdiv in Bulgaria and doing some research projects.
“When Dr Pirgozliev first suggested I applied for the PhD, I was a little surprised as it’s a different topic to what I’d worked on previously but I decided it’d be a good opportunity to broaden my current scientific knowledge, to learn new lab procedures and to improve my language skills.
“The research question of my current PhD is: can the enzyme xylanase, as a feed additive to poultry nutrition, improve the animal performance and how it influences the intestinal microbiota of broiler chickens.
“I also expect that this work will lead to me providing quality research papers for journals.
“So far my experience at Harper Adams has been excellent. The induction programme was very well organised. I like the university, its location and people.”