I’m on the MRes in Biomedical research course and many, if not all, of the career talks, resources and email adverts are all veering towards academia. Not to say this isn’t a good thing, many of us want to go down the academic route. However, my fellow reps and I have identified that there is a sizeable proportion of our course who do not want an academic career or are yet to be successful in securing one.
With that in mind, we planned a careers event and an informal reception not catered to academia. We scouted and contacted people from our course and allied courses who are in industry, public health, or alternate careers such as consulting.
By Grace Birch and Kristin Krohn Huse, PhD students in Infectious Diseases and Immunity
On Thursday June 28th, the postgraduate representatives for the Section of Infectious Diseases and Immunity hosted a series of talks on careers entitled “The Bench and Beyond” followed by a summer party for the entire section, to celebrate the arrival of summer and provide a more laidback opportunity to network between research groups.
After identifying a lack of speakers in careers outside of traditional bench science at other career sessions, speakers with connections to the section from a wide variety of careers were invited to attend. Some of the speakers had previously completed their PhDs or Post Docs in the section of Infectious Diseases and Immunity or currently work within the section.
The National Heart and Lung Institute Postgraduate committee organised a PhD careers panel on the 7th June with great success. The event, which was held at the union bar in South Kensington, was extremely well attended. Students travelled from all the Imperial campuses, which is often a challenge to achieve. Our five panellists were all working in non-academic areas such as industry, medical writing and scientific consulting. Students asked questions about interviews, their day to day life at work and why they chose their career paths.
After the panel session, students had the opportunity to chat one on one with the panellists and ask more specific questions.