Malcolm Macleod has a long association with the University, from student to Rector and now as Chair in Neurology and Translational Neurosciences.
BSc, MBChB, PhD
|Year of Graduation
1988, 1991, 2001
Your time at the University
I enjoyed my undergraduate years so much I took seven years to get a Medical degree, with a year intercollating in pharmacology with John Kelly then having a sabbatical year as President of EUSA.
My first summer was spent as a geriatric nursing assistant in Queensberry House – now site of the Scottish Parliament – by day, and a doorman at the Traverse Theatre by night. Later I combined these experiences working Fringe Festivals and Friday nights at Vi’s Bar in Teviot Row Union. I met my wife – now Professor of Forensic Psychiatry – on a Medical Practitioners’ Union night out at Sneaky Pete’s in the Cowgate.
I met my wife – now Professor of Forensic Psychiatry – on a Medical Practitioners’ Union night out at Sneaky Pete’s in the Cowgate.
Tell us about your Experiences since leaving the University
I did manage to get away from Edinburgh – to Australia for a year in 2003 – but I’ve kept a close association with the University and the city. When I was a junior doctor in Falkirk I was elected to serve as University Rector (1994-97), and then twinned this with a PhD in Neuroscience, again with John Kelly, in the Fujisawa Institute of Neuroscience in Edinburgh. As they say, one of the best things about working in the Appleton Tower is that it is one of the few places in Edinburgh from which you cannot see the Appleton Tower. After post-doctoral research and training in Neurology I was appointed Consultant Neurologist in NHS Forth Valley in 2005, rejoining the University as Senior Lecturer in 2008, and being appointed to a Chair in Neurology and Translational Neurosciences in 2012.
Our research seeks to develop new treatments for stroke; and to highlight ways in which the research process in the life sciences might be improved; University colleagues have provided great support and experience to support the former; and a sheltered environment to pursue the latter.
The only way that things improve is when people challenge the way things are, our current beliefs and our current ways of doing things. You can make your challenge gently, or with all the force you can muster. Wisdom is knowing which approach to use when. I’m still learning.