Engineering Science Alumnus Sara Khalid completed her MSc here in Oxford in 2009, before continuing on to gain her DPhil at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering (IBME), where she was a Rhodes Scholar. Sara now leads the machine learning and Big Data analytics arm of the Musculoskeletal Pharmaco-epidemiology group of the Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, Rheumatology and Musculoskeletal Sciences (NDORMS).
She is also the Founder and CEO of start-up company Trashformers, which received a boost from the Oxford Foundry's L.E.V8 Women pre-accelerator programme.
Here’s what they had to say:
Sara Khalid, a postdoctoral researcher and engineering alum of Oriel College, participate in the L.E.v8 Women pre-accelerator programme in the summer of 2008. Her start-up, Trashformers, is an intelligent platform for transforming plastic trash into compensation for households, benefit for businesses, and data-driven analytics for scientists and policy-makers. Designed to be a very intensive introduction to business practices for very early start-up founders, the pre-accelerator programme enabled participants to learn from high-profile female ambassadors at successful global companies such as X, HelloFresh and Adidas. They also had guidance and mentorship from entrepreneurs on the LEV8 accelerator, giving them insights from people who were a few steps ahead than themselves.
“I came out ready for the startup journey ahead”
Sara says: “The L.E.V.8 Women 4-day intensive in August was just that – intense! We had back-to-back coaching sessions, pitch prep, and mentorship from a star-studded cast. I went into the programme a complete entrepreneurship novice, and came out ready for the startup journey ahead.”
“Meeting Sara and making her ‘entrepreneur-mentor’ for the L.E.V.8 Women programme was an enlightening and enriching experience for me. Even though we’re in totally different industry sectors, and at different stages of our entrepreneurial journeys, it was incredibly useful to share insights and experiences. I learned a lot from her very direct and passionate approach to her business, and her questions made me look at my own venture with fresh eyes.”
-Dr Nav Nagra, Founder and CEO, Digital Health Oxford (OXFO L.E.V8 Cohort 1)