Frances Rapport, 43
Job advertised in The Times Higher , May 16 2003.
The Julian Tudor Hart Research Fellowship
University of Wales Swansea Clinical School
£32,125 to £45,000 approximately per annum depending on experience
Frances Rapport switched from fine art to medical research in her 30s. Last October, she started a three-year contract as a research fellow at the Swansea Clinical School.
Why did she change career? "I had a public commission to make stained glass and was supporting the project by working in hospital admin. I enjoyed it so much that I applied for a research assistant post in the School of Nursing," she says.
Rapport then did an MPhil and a PhD in women's experience of infertility treatment.
She moved to Swansea two years ago as a research consultant. "I ended up as acting director of research and development for a mid and east Wales support unit when the job was advertised."
The Julian Tudor Hart fellowship, funded by AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, was a one-off. Adrian Edwards, general practitioner and reader, says: "We were donated the money to create a fellowship to help the research team work on risk and patients' involvement in decisions."
Epidemiologist Julian Tudor Hart, after whom the fellowship was named, sat on the interview panel. Rapport "made a good presentation about her research skills and how they would fit in", Edwards says.
Since starting, Rapport has worked on primary care projects linking groups, individuals and disciplines at home and abroad. "I do less teaching, mainly as guest lecturer, but I'm following my interests - hermeneutic phenomenology and new qualitative methodology."
She also brings in big names in sociology to Swansea to run masterclasses for health and social-care workers.