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Keeping it in the family

From left: Dr Pauline Emmett, Dr Clare Emmett and the Revd John Emmett

From left: Dr Pauline Emmett, Dr Clare Emmett and the Revd John Emmett Rhonda Knight

5 August 2008

For a few minutes during the University’s July graduation ceremony, three members of the Emmett family – and three members of staff – were on stage all at once.

Dr Clare Emmett, a Research Associate in Primary Health Care, gained a PhD, watched by her parents, Dr Pauline Emmett and the Revd Dr John Emmett, both of whom took part in the staff procession.

Dr Clare Emmett gained her PhD in the Department of Community Based Medicine with a thesis entitled ‘Decision aids for mode of delivery after previous caesarean section’. She has since taken up a new role in the Academic Unit of Primary Health Care, carrying out research investigating the acceptability of community-based screening for the prevention of fracture among women aged 70-85 years. Clare also recently completed her training in Health Psychology and is a Chartered Psychologist.

Her mother, Dr Pauline Emmett, is a Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Community Based Medicine. She has worked for the ALSPAC (Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children) study since it conception. A dietician and nutritionist, Dr Pauline Emmett has been instrumental in the collection and analysis of data about diet and eating habits in the ALSPAC cohort. Her PhD, awarded by the University of Bristol in 2004, was gained by publication, as a reflection of the substantial outputs she has generated through her work for ALSPAC. 

Clare’s father, the Revd Dr John Emmett, was recently appointed Director of Studies at Wesley College, a Methodist institution for theological education in Westbury-on-Trym. The college is affiliated to the University of Bristol, which validates the degree of BA in Theology and Ministry taught at Wesley College. John has a PhD in the field of nuclear power physics from Imperial College London. He worked in the nuclear power industry for 23 years before becoming a Methodist minister.

Clare Emmett said: ‘My graduation was always going to be a special day, as a celebration of my achievement and a culmination of years of hard work. The day was made all the more special because both my parents were able share it with me in such a unique way.’

Pauline Emmett said: ‘It was a very proud moment when John and I lined up together in caps and gowns to process into the Great Hall for Clare’s graduation and even prouder when she came across the stage to be greeted by the Vice-Chancellor. We found his words about staff and parental support to students doubly apt.’

‘My new appointment, a few months ago, came just in time for us to be together ‘in red’ for this truly memorable moment,’ added John Emmett.

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