Hi. My name is Jess and I'm an Analytical Researcher in the Extractables and Leachables department at Teva's Waterford site.
I did summer placements at Waterford during my first and second years at college... these were brilliant as they showed me that I wanted to work in the industry. I gained experience working as a Research and Development (R&D) Analyst in the Analytical Development team where I performed device performance and product characterisation testing to support new inhalation product development. I got to see how things were really done within industry during my time at Teva and also got to meet a lot of interesting people along the way.
The placements sparked my interest when I went back to college... You learn so much from lectures but it's eye opening to see what you’re thought being put into practice. One of the most surprising things was how highly regulated and controlled the industry really is, particularly within the labs.
My family was a big influence on me doing science... My parents encouraged us to do science in school particularly because of the various career paths within science and technology and I always enjoyed the subject. Both my Dad and Brother have worked within the industry for years now and they definitely played a big role in helping me decipher what I wanted to specialise in within the industry as there are so many options.
After college... I did a bachelor’s degree in pharmaceutical science at the Waterford Institute of Technology, and went on to do a master’s in biotechnology at the National University of Ireland, Galway. My first job was working in quality control before moving to R&D as an Analytical Development Chemist. From there, I joined Teva in 2022 as an Analytical Researcher.
You get trained up quickly here... People are friendly, very specialised, and brilliant at what they do. They want you to be able to do the work as well as them. There are lots of opportunities to progress in your role too – for example, to become a scientist, then senior scientist, manager and so on... you can really grow your career.
I find my role very interesting... I’m an Analytical Researcher within the Extractables and Leachables (E&L) Department. My team focus on inhalation products. In short, we ensure that our medical devices (the plastic, metal and rubber parts of an inhalation product) don’t release any chemical compounds into the drug that can be toxic to the patient or that could reduce how effective the product may be. As we work on a range of different products you’re always learning something new.
My role is 50/50 in the lab/desk... Working on product projects entails a lot of documentation work from start to finish as well as testing within the lab and the processing and interpretation of your data.
If you’re currently in college, I’d really recommend trying to get an industrial placement to find out if it’s the right route for you... The earlier you can get experience in industry, the better. Waterford has lots of opportunities for students, so why not give it a go?
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