I finished my 4-year mathematics undergraduate degree at the University of Warwick (United Kingdom) in 2010 and was awarded First class honours in Master of Mathematics (MMath), which is an undergraduate/integrated masters degree.
Then, not knowing what to do for a career, I applied and became part of the first cohort of the MASDOC graduate programme also at the University of Warwick. This is again a 4-year programme where in the first year I embarked on a research project to test out my compatibility with my future supervisors for the next three years. At the end of my first year of MASDOC (2011) I was award a M.Sc. in Mathematics and Statistics with a thesis supervised by Dr Björn Stinner and Prof. Charles Elliott.
The topic was on a particular partial differential equation called the Allen-Cahn equation, and it is part of a class of mathematical models called the phase field models - which later became a central theme of my research. Together with my two supervisors, my Ph.D. project was to use the phase field method to formulate and derive new models for soluble surfactants in two-phase fluid flow. In 2014, I successfully defend my thesis (titled Diffuse interface models of soluble surfactants in two-phase fluid flows) and graduated with a Ph.D. in Mathematics as the first graduate from the MASDOC programme.
During my Ph.D. studies, I had the fortune to collaborate with my future postdoc advisor Prof. Dr. Harald Garcke from the University of Regensburg, who then offered me a three-year postdoc position in his group. During my time there I expanded my research interest to tumour growth modelling with the phase field method, analysis and optimal control of partial differential equations (PDE), as well as shape and topology optimisation with PDE constraints. It was during those three years that I had the opportunity to collaborate with many experts from Germany, Italy and China.
After my postdoc position in Regensburg has finished, I was fortunate to obtain a three-year research assistant professorship in the Chinese University of Hong Kong. There, I became more independent with my research, and experienced lecturing and grant writing for the first time. With advice from my mentor Prof. Jun Zou I was able to obtain three consecutive annual research grants from the Hong Kong Research Grants Council during my three-year tenure, with each grant funding a three-year project related to the applications of the phase field method.
Currently I am based at the Hong Kong Baptist Unviersity as an assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics.