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Leader in Integrated ICT Hardware & Systems

Career Focus: Julie Raulin Tyndall National Institute

Posted on: 02 Feb 2024

Career Focus: Julie Raulin Tyndall National Institute

Julie Raulin is a PhD candidate in the Photonic Systems Group, at the Irish Photonic Integration Centre (IPIC), SFI Research Centre for Photonics, Tyndall.

Today she shares her career journey with us, the influence of her role models and descibes how working at Tyndall has empowered her not only to fulfil, but to expand her potential.

What is your current role?

I am a PhD Candidate in the Photonic Systems Group, at IPIC, Tyndall and in the School of Computer Science and Information Technology department in University College Cork. My research is focused on optical communications and networks of the future, simplifying network architecture stack for lower power consumption, while providing for high bandwidth, high capacity and low latency. I am also the OPTICA/SPIE Student Chapter president at Tyndall, and together with a motivated team of students, we are creating inspiring events related to photonics.


What path led you here?

I spent my undergrad in France, studying Electrical Engineering and Computer Science in a School known as  ENSEA, and then pursued a double master’s degree with University College Cork (MEngSc). Throughout my studies, I’ve always tried to learn as broadly as I can and in various environments, through internships in companies and research projects on various topics. Despite initial plans for an internship in Limerick disrupted by COVID-19 during my Masters in UCC, I unexpectedly found great fulfilment in conducting my thesis on a research project with Dr Fatima Gunning. Deviating from my original industry-focused career path, I decided to extend my academic journey by starting a PhD at Tyndall under the supervision of Fatima.


Did you have a role model who influenced your career choice?

I must give credit to both my parents, for guiding me throughout my very early career. I’ve always struggled to decide what career path I should pursue and understand what I like, and my parents were always very supportive, encouraging me to explore diverse opportunities through internships and career events. Eventually, I encountered my master’s project supervisor, Dr Fatima Gunning, and discovered a profound interest in the subject matter. Fatima became not only a role model for her technical prowess but also for her mentorship qualities, which inspired me to pursue a PhD under her guidance. Beyond imparting knowledge, she has contributed significantly to my personal growth.


How has working at Tyndall enabled you to fulfil your potential?

Tyndall allows me to fully realise my potential both professionally and personally. I have encountered experts and colleagues from different research areas in photonics, which provides a rich environment for learning. Tyndall also empowers me to extend my potential well beyond my academic curriculum, with opportunities such as being part of the Student Chapter to improve soft skills and leadership skills, and through various career/networking events, fostering collaborations.


What advice would you give your younger self?

The best way to learn is to get out of your comfort zone. Don’t be afraid of not knowing what you want to do when everyone else already knows. Take advantage of every opportunity you have, even if it wasn’t the initial plan. Be patient and open-minded; you will meet people along the way that will guide you and inspire you.