Biochem to Education Officer
2. Course/ job
Education Officer and Charity Trustee
Biology, Chemistry and Psychology – AS Mathematics (never again!)
5. Journey in 3 words
Growth, Challenging and Fun
6. Briefly describe your role
The best way to describe my sabbatical officer role is to compare it to an internship year. Every day is a learning curve. I had to run a campaign and get elected by university students for this position. As the Education Officer, I represent over 18,000 students on education matters, teaching quality and student experience. I have regular meetings with key stakeholders at the university (Vice Chancellor Office) where we discuss key issues and policies that affect student lives at university – from diversity, mental health to assessments. I also work closely with students to gather feedback that I report back at senior level university committees. One thing I can say is that every day is completely different working in a students’ union- definitely not a normal ‘9-5’ job. I recently got appointed as a Director for the governing body that handles all students’ complaints in England and Wales.
7.What advice would you give someone wanting a similar role to you?
Just do it! Honestly, one of the biggest lessons I learnt at university is stepping out of my comfort zone. My role as Education Officer is quite different as there are very few jobs at this level like this in the world. Where else would you get a job by running a campaign and an election? It was a massive comfort leap which I am so happy I went through with it. I know this kind of role only applies to current students at university, but the message remains. Growth only comes out of your comfort zone.
8. Work- Life Balance
This was quite challenging to manage at the start, as I mentioned, my work is not a typical 9-5 so I found it hard switching off from work at times. I found myself working from home when I shouldn’t have been. It is definitely a lot more better now, I had to learn how to discipline myself around my work and create time to actually rest. I started playing basketball again and joined a local team and I love a good Netflix series.
9. What advice would you give someone wanting to study the same degree?
Research what and why you would want to study a bioscience degree. The good thing about life science degrees are you gain a lot of transferrable skills that would allow you to go into almost any field/ sector. I started off my degree wanting to study medicine as I believed that was the only career available in science – there is so much different roles that are interlinked with science! So my advice to you will be come with an open mind and be ready to explore different avenues.
10.What transferrable skills do you use from your degree now in your job
Time management is key. Working with different deadlines and, at times, under stressful working conditions at university (say no to revision all nighters lol) helped me learn how to manage my time a lot more in my current job. Also, interpersonal skills is so important. University can often leave you in a bubble so I am forever grateful for the group works and presentations I had to do over the course of my degree They built my leadership attributes and how to work better in a team.
11.Where do you see yourself in 5 years
I would love to explore a career in cancer research, either in policy making or in a lab finishing off a PhD somewhere…
12. Outside science how would you describe yourself
One of my passion is hair styling. I love spending time on YouTube learning different styles and techniques of black hair textures. If I wasn’t pursing a career in science I would love to be a bridal hair stylist. I love weddings and hair.
13. When considering your career path, how much has your potential salary affected your decision?
I think with science and my career in general, I know that there is a clear progression depending on what route I take. Potential salary plays a big factor as most graduates’ roles for life science (in lab based- technician roles) are underpaid and there doesn’t seem to be a lot of senior position roles available unless you are in managerial roles.
I hope this post inspires you to follow your passions and acknowledge that at every stage of your career will involve perseverance, consistency and discipline to help you achieve your desired goal. Never forget that “ no accomplishment is too small and no goal is too high”
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