It takes the pressure off

Being armed with a year’s experience from a placement takes some of the pressure off looking for a job when you graduate.

Employers are looking for experience these days, so it gives you a head start. It also breaks up the time studying at university, and allows you to put what you’ve learnt into practice.

I worked for a drug discovery company called Selcia, mainly running and developing assays. As well as expanding my lab skills I developed my understanding of the collaborations and funding involved in drug discovery programmes.

I truly appreciated just how much I’d gained from my placement when I gave a presentation to the department at the end of the year. It helped me realise how much I’d grown in confidence.

Be open-minded and brave!

Going on placement can seem daunting, especially when you're choosing where to go. Don’t be too fussy or you may miss a great opportunity in an area you hadn’t previously considered.

Wherever you go, you’ll gain plenty of transferable skills, and it might open your eyes to a career in something different. I'm keen to remain in drug discovery when I graduate. It is a valuable area of industry with loads of variety, and the opportunity to keep on learning.