Microbiology industrial placement student at University of Leeds

Amy Roe

Where did you do your placement year & what was your job role? 

My placement year was at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, where I worked as a research intern in the Neuroscience department.

What did you decide to do a year in industry?

As someone who has always intended to complete a Ph.D. and work in the research field, the year in industry programme seemed like a fantastic way to get some much-needed practical experience, as well as to hopefully get a paper under my belt before completing my bachelor's degree.

What were your key responsibilities? How did these develop as your placement progressed?

I've been fortunate enough to be given almost complete responsibility over my specific project. Initially this came with a lot of oversight from my supervisor, but as I've settled into the lab I've been given more and more free rein. It was a little overwhelming at first, but I think that it's really prepared me for the realities of working in a research lab.

We want other students at Leeds to know what an exciting opportunity the year in industry is. What was the real highlight for you?

For me, the real highlight was being able to work with animal models, specifically mice. This is the sort of experience I simply couldn't get as part of my degree, so I appreciate it immensely. Of course, I've also really enjoyed getting to know my co-workers, who were wonderfully friendly from day one. 

Student support is an important part of a successful placement. How did the university support you during your year in industry? 

I've been fortunate in that I settled into my placement very quickly, and as such didn't need much support from the university. However, Liz Baylin and Dr. Pickles have always been on hand via email in the event that any concerns did arise, and I've also been able to have a Skype meeting with my tutor. The level of support has generally been very good, especially when you consider that I'm halfway around the world in another country!