CVS Student named an “Education Legend” by VisitScotland
VisitScotland has just named PhD student, Hannah Costello, as a Young Legend in Education for her work in schools, raising awareness about heart health and CPR. This award recognises the role she played in founding and implementing a British Heart Foundation schools outreach programme.
Hannah Costello is a BHF-funded PhD student at the Centre for Cardiovascular Science, studying salt intake and steroid hormones, in connection to hypertension and cardiovascular diseases.
Aside from conducting cardiovascular research, Hannah focuses much of her extracurricular time engaging the public with science and heart research. She acts as a STEM Ambassador, a Schools and Youth Volunteer speaker for the BHF, a BHF fundraiser, and leads the BHF Scotland Schools Outreach Programme, which she established last year.
As part of the BHF Scotland Schools Outreach Programme, Hannah has trained 15 other PhD students to deliver heart health activities in schools across Scotland. So far, the programme has reached primary and secondary pupils in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee and St Andrews, teaching pupils about the importance of CPR and making heart-healthy life choices. Due to the programme’s success, Hannah hopes to eventually broaden the schools engagement programme, bringing CPR and research to even more communities.
In addition to winning VisitScotland’s 2019 Young Legend Award, the BHF also awarded Hannah with the 2018 BHF Heart Hero Award for Research Engagement for her outreach work.
"The BHF Outreach programme complements my PhD research by contributing to the “bigger picture” of public health in Scotland," remarked Hannah. "I educate children about heart health and safety, empowering them to make positive life choices and inspiring the next generation of scientists. The programme integrates into the school curriculum and will improve the health of the nation by instilling the importance of healthy choices."