Helena graduated from the University of Bath in 2006 with an undergraduate masters degree in chemistry (MChem, 1st class honours), before moving to Durham University to study for a PhD in the Department of Chemistry under the supervision of Dr. Andrés E. Goeta and Prof. Judith A. K. Howard (CBE, FRS). Her thesis described detailed structure-property correlations in switchable molecular materials using in-situ light irradiation, high-pressure and variable-temperature crystallographic investigations.
In 2010 she moved to the Laboratoire de Chimie de Coordination in Toulouse (LCC-CNRS) for a two year post-doctoral appointment under the supervision of Dr. Gábor Molnár and Dr. Azzedine Bousseksou in the Switchable Molecular Materials group. During that time she investigated the physics of the spin crossover phenomenon under pressure (in collaboration with Prof. Philippe Guionneau at the Institut de Chimie de la Matière Condensée de Bordeaux (ICMCB-CNRS)), and initiated a project concerned with novel applications for molecular materials as actuator devices.
In 2013 she returned to the University of Bath for a post-doctoral position under the supervision of Prof. Paul R. Raithby, before taking up the position of Lecturer in Chemistry at the University of Kent in 2015.
In 2018 Helena was promoted to Senior Lecturer and she is currently the Supramolecular, Interfacial and Synthetic Chemistry (SISC) research group leader.