How to get a tenure track job in the USA

On 15th of May, Dr. Karen Kelsky from The Professor Is In spoke to KCL PhD students and researchers about  academic careers in the USA. She kept a packed lecture theatre engrossed with her tips and wisdom for over 90 minutes and didn’t pull her punches on some of the trickier aspects.

Our colleagues at UCL Research Careers have written a blog post summarising her talk which is well worth reading if you are applying for academic jobs in America.  Follow this link to read it.

Spotlight Series: Science Beyond Academia Nora McFadden – Science Procurement Manager, The Crick Institute

Nora’s career in science started with her undergraduate degree in medical microbiology at Warwick which she followed by jumping straight to a PhD at Imperial College.

After working as a post-doc she realised that she didn’t want to be a PI and couldn’t see a future for herself in lab-based academic research.

She moved initially to lab management at CRUK as the Crick was being developed and it was made clear to her that progression within her role would be possible. She became involved in procurement for the Institute as it was being built and works there currently, managing the purchasing of supplies and equipment for a large and complex institution.

Nora emphasises that science background is essential as she needs to understand the scientific context in order to effectively provide equipment and supplies as well as communicate effectively with researchers.

Her work is varied and requires very close attention to detail with lots of opportunity for project management. The skills of a researcher in managing, communicating and understanding data, problem solving, analysis, time management and being flexible and adaptable all come frequently into play. There are frequent opportunities to interact with the research the researchers and this kind of role can be great for those who don’t want to lose touch with science but do want to try a different profession.

The environment is often more formal than academic research. There are regular office hours and the culture is often more like that of a business than a university.

For those interested in applying for professional support roles within science, Nora recommends that you try to get some experience of and contact with people working in these roles and show your interest and willingness to get involved.

CVs and applications should be skills focussed and much less detailed than academic CVs as well as thoroughly tailored towards the role and institution you are applying for.

How to be well informed about working in life science

I want to work in the life science industry: How do I become more commercially aware?

As a PhD student or postdoctoral researcher, you may be considering a job in the life science industry. Without any previous industry experience, it can be an uphill struggle to show that you understand the sector, how it works, and how they make their money. This knowledge is known as commercial awareness and can take some time to develop. Often, it is developed once you are in a sector, as you become familiar with how the organisation works.  However, many employers want you to illustrate that you have commercial awareness on your CV and in an interview. It is therefore worth doing some research and trying to gain a little more expertise in this area. It will make a big difference to your chances of securing an industry job.

Here are four tips on how to do this:

 Hang out where industry people hang out!

Membership organisations such as OBN, OBR and OneNucleus often organise networking events where you can learn about current trends in life science and meet people from industry. Go along to an event, update your knowledge of the sector and speak to people about their jobs. It sounds obvious but networking within academic circles will not improve your understanding of how industry works.

Understand the sector

The life science sector has undergone a lot of changes over the last 20 years, with new business models evolving. Do your research to understand what is happening e.g. new business models now means that research and development happens within a range of organisations such as biopharmaceutical companies, medical technology companies, contract research organisations and not for profits.

Begin your research by reading online publications and following relevant people and organisations on Twitter e.g. The Government Office for Life Science. The following articles also give an overview of the life science sector in both the UK and globally, respectively:

Enter life science business competitions

There are several competitions that can help scientists learn about the commercialisation of research, which is an important part of developing commercial awareness. Try to enter such competitions as they often provide some training as well as exposure to industry experts.

 Get some work experience

This is difficult to achieve whilst continuing to do your research. You are already in a full-time job, after all! Some researchers take annual leave and some work at the weekends to broaden their expertise.  If potential work experience will benefit your current research or your PI, it might be possible to organise some time away from the laboratory.

Here are a few ideas for gaining work experience that will improve your commercial awareness:

  • Look out for part-time work opportunities doing consultancy work. These are sometimes posted on the Kings College London Graduate School Blog. Also look at the OBR website or Freshminds for occasional consultancy opportunities.
  • Sign up to the Kings Research Consultancy where you have the chance to work with an external organisation on a topic that relates to your research.
  • Look out for part-time work opportunities or project based work that can be done alongside your research. Look at Kings JobOnline for such opportunities and look for roles that have a business or commercial focus.
  • Keep up to date with business issues that relate to King’s researchers, by subscribing to and reading the Kings College London Graduate School Blog. Search in the ‘Business’ category on the right-hand side.

Many thanks to Dr. Tracy Bussoli for this guest blog. Find more about Tracy here.

Internship Opportunities Available for Postgraduates

Do you want to develop new skills through a paid summer internship?

Many students choose to engage in internships to help fund their studies and to gain skills to help with employability. Knowing this we thought we would share some opportunities which are available exclusively to King’s students!

Finding & Applying to Opportunities
New opportunities will be posted on King’s CareerConnect. If you are interested in applying for the Summer Scheme vacancies or if you are looking for Part-time work, you must first locate the ‘Exclusive Internships for King’s Students’ tab, and click ‘Search and apply’.

You can also find the Kings Internship Team on Facebook. They regularly post alerts to all new vacancies on their Facebook page so why not ‘like’ their page so you don’t miss an opportunity!

There is now also an RSS feed for opportunities advertised through the King’s Internships Part Time & Summer Schemes. Please use the URL to add to your webpages and KEATS pages: https://kcl.targetconnect.net/content/rss/kingsinternships

For a flavour of what schemes you could be applying for, please see the list of opportunities currently being advertised below:

Summer Schemes

Deadline  Opportunity title Company
20-Apr-17 Video Production Intern 1ClickPromos
20-Apr-17 Software Development Intern Sequel Business Solutions
23-Apr-17 Data Team Internship River and Mercantile Group
01-May-17 Business Development Intern BuddyHub
07-May-17 ETF Securities ETF Securities (UK) Limited
07-May-17 Marketing and Social Media Intern Kafoodle
12-May-17 Business Project Intern Celgene

King’s PhD Students, King’s Widening Participation Department needs you!

King’s Widening Participation unit is seeking PhD students who would be interested in supervising an academic piece of work, produced by A-level pupils. We provide full support and a payment of £150 per student completing an assignment with your support. This is a great way to use your experience of university to help pupils in understanding and developing the skills necessary to be successful at a competitive university. In addition, this offers you an opportunity to work with young people and gain experience of supervising, marking and providing feedback on academic work close to undergraduate level.

This role requires you to be available in London for around 10 hours between May and September 2017 to meet with and provide feedback to your tutees.  Successful applicants will be expected to attend training on the 14th June, 2.30 – 5pm and attend the Launch event where you will meet your tutees on the 19th July, 5pm – 8pm.

Closing date for applications is the 8th May 2017. All details on how to apply and an application form can be found at the web link below:

https://podio.com/webforms/18123800/1217589

Widening participation is the opening up of the university to under-represented groups. Here at King’s College London we’re committed to finding the brightest minds regardless of their background and supporting them in accessing higher education. Widening participation is one of the eight strategic priorities for King’s College London. Each year we develop an fair access agreement with the Office for Fair Access (OFFA) that sets us clear benchmarks for our progress in supporting key groups. At King’s we believe a diverse study body enriches the education that we offer.

For further information on King’s Widening Participation, see the following website: www.kcl.ac.uk/study/widening-participation/about-us.aspx.

 

 

 

Pre-Consultancy Training Workshop: 9 May

Tuesday, 9 May 2017
10:00 – 15:30
S3.31, Strand Campus

King’s PhD students who are interested in consultancy work but who are unsure as to whether they have the skills for it, are invited to the next pre-consultancy training workshop on Tuesday 9 May.

Please find the agenda below.

10 – 10:45 Preparing your Application  Donald Lush, Careers Consultant
 10:45 – 11:30 Working for yourself  Donald Lush, Careers Consultant
 11:30 – 11:45 King’s Research Consultancy – Programme Overview  Katie Black/Jon Sanders, Careers & Employability
11:45 – 12:15 Working as a Consultant – What to Expect
12:15 – 12:45 My King’s Research Consultancy Project  Aine Rubikaite, Final Year PhD Candidate, Developmental Neurobiology, IoPPN
 12:45 – 13:30 Lunch Break
 13:30 – 15:30 Project Management, Dealing with Client Issues and Presenting your Conclusions  Dr Ross English – Researcher Development Unit

To book a place on this workshop, please email careers-consultancy@kcl.ac.uk, or call 020 7848 1376.

About the King’s Research Consultancy
The King’s Research Consultancy is a programme offering PhDs (post-upgrade) the opportunity to consult on a specific research project within a department at King’s College London, or with an external organisation.

You can benefit from this scheme by:

  • Gaining advanced levels of work-based experiential learning and build on research, analytical and project management skills.
  • Having access to pre-consultancy training and support from King’s Careers & Employability, if required.
  • Having the opportunity to apply your PhD subject knowledge to a commercial project, impacting significantly and tangibly on organisational or departmental outcomes.

Meaningful, paid teaching experience at this year’s K+ Spotlight Summer School

An exciting, developmental and paid opportunity is being offered to King’s doctoral and post-doctoral researchers to join in the collaboration between The Brilliant Club and the K+ programme, which is King’s College London’s flagship widening participation initiative.

The Brilliant Club is recruiting King’s College London doctoral and post-doctoral researchers to deliver the academic strand of the K+ Spotlight Summer School, an annual highlight in the K+ Programme. You will receive training from qualified teachers, and then design and deliver a series of five tutorials based on your own research to small groups of sixth form pupils over the course of a week.

K+ 2017

Those who are conducting research within the following areas are of particular interest: Healthcare, Dentistry, Maths, Computer Science, Politics, History, English Language and Literature.

If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch with Charlie at charlotte.talbotrice@thebrilliantclub.org.

 

Kings Internships

Considering part-time work alongside your degree? Wanting to develop new skills through a paid internship?

Many students chose to engage in part-time work to help fund their studies or to gain skills to help with employability. Knowing this we thought we would share some opportunities which are available exclusively to KCL students!

Finding & Applying to Opportunities

New opportunities will be posted on King’s CareerConnect, over the next few months. Please note that if you are interested in applying for the Summer Scheme vacancies, you must first locate the ‘Exclusive Internships for King’s Students’ tab, and click ‘Search and apply’.  You can also find the Kings Internship Team on Facebook. They regularly post alerts to all new vacancies on their Facebook page so why not like their page so you don’t miss an opportunity!

For a flavour of what schemes you could be applying for, please see the list of opportunities currently being advertised below;

Part Time Schemes

Deadline  Opportunity title Deadline  Company
26-Mar-17 Research Interns Solvency ii Wire
29-Mar-17 General Admin Intern Bahati Books
29-Mar-17 Marketing Intern Bahati Books
31-Mar-17 E-Learning Content Production Interns TechQuarters
13-Apr-17 Business Engagement Intern Bisi Alimi Foundation
13-Apr-17 Communication and Research Intern Bisi Alimi Foundation
13-Apr-17 Fellowship Coordinator Intern Bisi Alimi Foundation

Summer Schemes

Deadline  Opportunity title Company
27-Mar-17 PR, Marketing & Social Media Intern LID Helmets
29-Mar-17 Scientific Product Stewardship Intern Cuts Ice Ltd
29-Mar-17 Packaging Design Intern Cuts Ice Ltd
01-Apr-17 Data Science Intern Printastic
02-Apr-17 Health Project Manager / Account Executive Intern Partizan international Limited
03-Apr-17 In-House Nutrition Consultant Intern Kafoodle
03-Apr-17 Marketing and Social Media Intern Kafoodle
06-Apr-17 Business Project Intern Celgene
06-Apr-17 Business Intern Stadn Ltd
07-Apr-17 Data Analytics Intern Prudential Plc
07-Apr-17 Healthcare Programmes and Communications Intern Four Health Communications
08-Apr-17 Scientific Summer Analyst/Consultant Intern Biolacuna Ltd.
09-Apr-17 DevOps Infrastructure Engineer Intern LiveWyer Ltd
13-Apr-17 Psychology Intern Spoonful of Sugar
15-Apr-17 Marketing Intern WeAreWaterloo Business Improvement District (BID)

 

If you have questions or would like to meet the Internship Team why not go along to meet them! Here are the details of where and when you can find them:

 Date  Time  Campus  Precise Location
Thursday 23rd March 11am – 2pm Strand Second Floor, Corridor outside Chapters Cafe
 Thursday 2nd May 11am – 2pm  Waterloo FWB, Level 1, Alcove outside library
Wednesday 3rd May  11am – 2pm  Guy’s Ground Floor, New Hunt’s House
Friday 5th May  11am – 2pm  Strand (Maughan) Entrance to the Maughan library

Internship Opportunities Available for Postgraduates

Considering Part-time Work alongside your Degree? Wanting to Develop New Skills through a Paid Internship?

Many students chose to engage in part-time work to help fund their studies or to gain skills to help with employability. Knowing this we thought we would share some opportunities which are available exclusively to KCL students! Please see the list below to see what opportunities interest you.

Make sure that you read through the eligibility criteria carefully and apply as directed through the advertisement.

Good luck!

For more information about King’s CareerConnect please see here: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/campuslife/services/careers/about/CareerConnect/CareerConnect.aspx

A career in medical communications – visit to Nucleus Global

Nucleus Global is a group of medical communications agencies that provides full in-house consulting and communications services to the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, and to healthcare professionals. They have offices across the globe.

As well as a number of full-service medical communications agencies, Nucleus Global also has its own continuing and independent medical education companies. You can find out more about them here. To find about more about medical communications careers click here.

As an employer, they focus on recruiting people with science PhDs for both their client services and editorial roles because of the depth of knowledge and advanced scientific and research skills.  Nucleus Global continuously recruits throughout the year.

They initially require a CV which is followed by a brief phone call. The CV is a perfect opportunity to demonstrate good communication skills. It should be attractive, well laid out with perfect grammar and spelling. You should also demonstrate how your skills match the needs of medical communications.

If you are successful in the initial screening there is a writing test and usually an interview process, which is competency based.  Candidates are given one week to complete the writing test to a brief which is provided. Demonstration of effective plain English written communication is essential to success in the recruitment process.

The company places good value on activities additional to your research. This may be volunteering, taking on extra responsibilities, playing sport or other activities that demonstrate your interests and strengths. You should also consider how your values align with those of the company, which is very team oriented and wants to work with people who thrive in this sort of environment. This can be quite a contrast to the more solitary life of an academic researcher.

As a business, the company has a much faster pace than academic research but maintains the same scientific rigour and high ethical standards. Finally, as a global business, with a diverse range of clients, your people skills are highly valued and vital to succeeding.

Many thanks to all at Nucleus Global for hosting the visit and being so generous with their time and insights.