Sophie is a final year Medical Student at the University of Birmingham. She is passionate about ending weight stigma. In 2019/20, she achieved a first class intercalated BSc in Medical Anthropology from the University of Edinburgh. She wrote her dissertation on social science perspectives of obesity, discussing the pervasive nature and health-harming effects of weight stigma.
She campaigns for the eating disorder charity ‘Beat’, and has been the committee of the University of Birmingham’s ‘Beat’ branch for the past two years. This society helps to raise awareness of the important work undertaken by Beat for people living with eating disorders, particularly by helping to demystify and destigmatise the conditions amongst the University population.
She is a member of the University of Birmingham’s ‘DAISy PCOS’ leadership programme, designed to build knowledge, skills and confidence in its members to become advocates for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. The aim of the group is to help reduce the stigma and health inequality for people with PCOS by delivering public engagement activities and launching awareness campaigns.
She has worked with Dr Helen Parretti, also a member of the professional steering group, on a review relating to bariatric surgery. This has been presented to faculty at the University of Birmingham Medical School, where she drew attention to weight stigma in the clinical environment and earnt 3rd prize.
She has secured a Specialised Foundation Post associated with the University of Sheffield commencing in July 22. Sophie intends to use her academic block in primary care to research metabolic syndrome in areas of socioeconomic deprivation.
Sophie is passionate about the OEN mission because she has witnessed, personally and professionally, problematic discourses around obesity and ultimately the harm this causes people living with the condition. Sophie believes it is entirely unacceptable that the medical profession is party to this, despite it being well-placed to challenge such counterproductive and detrimental narratives. Sophie believes that it is her duty, as a future healthcare professional, to help end weight stigma in clinical practice and society more broadly.