‘The best careers event ever…': case studies from the NMS careers day

Listening attentively to a speaker

Listening attentively to a speaker

The NMS Careers Day this week was a great success, with 60 PhDs and post-docs attending and listening to ten employers talk about their transition from PhD and post-doc onwards.

Key learning points from our opening speaker, Robert Bowles from the Royal Society of Chemistry:

 

  • Industry is changing – look at SMEs as well as large corporates as they are outsourcing much of their R&D
  • Use the professional body for your sector area (eg Royal Societies and Institutes – eg see IMA for maths, RSC (Chemistry), IOP (Physics) and so on) for networking, jobs, other opportunities, and news
  • Your subject matter may not be what gets you recruited, but instead the high level analytical skills you bring – consider your values and interests when thinking about moving on.

Steffen Zschaler, Senior Lecturer at King’s, talked about his role as an academic.

  • Remember that PhDs from other countries have more time to be building a CV, as their PhDs take longer.  Other countries might consider a 3/4 year UK PhD to be pretty short.  How will you write about it in your application?
  • What do academics actually do?  Steffen spends less than a third of his time conducting ‘research’ – he tries to steal some research time from his teaching and admin, but it is tricky.  A good third of his time is spent in administrative tasks, and there is a lot of marking involved in the large subject cohorts.
  • The best thing about the role is the freedom it brings.

Parimal Patel – Schroders

Parimal began his academic career at the University of Leicester, graduating in 2002 with an MPhys in Astrophysics. After completing a PhD in this topic in Nottingham, in 2006 Parimal made the transition into the corporate world, becoming an analyst, for Standard Bank plc. In this role Parimal was able to put his studies to use, particularly with regard to developing pricing models and analysis. Since 2013, he has been operating in risk analysis at Schroders.

Adele Julien – Researchers in Schools

Adele is in the third year of her PhD at The Open University. Her PhD research focuses on pollen-vegetation relationships in Ghana and pollen wall chemistry. This work helps to inform the interpretation of the pollen fossil record, which in turn aids our understanding of climate change over time. Alongside her studies, Adele is actively involved with The Brilliant Club, the organisation that oversees the Researchers in Schools initiative. Adele works closely with the RIS Head Office team to educate organisations and institutions about the scheme, which places PhDs in secondary schools as trainee teachers whilst allowing them to maintain a research profile.  She also regularly speaks about the research that is produced through the initiative within universities. She has also experienced what it’s like to be on placement through the RIS program.

Neal O’Riain – Pivigo

Neal is the Community Manager at Pivigo, a data science training and recruiting company. Originally from Ireland, Neal has a PhD in Astrophysics from Trinity College, Dublin, and in his research career he worked on modelling the atmospheres of stars. During his time in academia he was heavily involved in science engagement and education. He is the founder of Student2Scientist, a science education initiative funded by Google and SFI, aimed at introducing computing centrally in the Irish STEM curriculum. At Pivigo Neal’s role is to support PhDs in their transition from academia to jobs in Data Science.

Jassel Majevadia – IBM

A scientist by training, Jassel completed a PhD on the fracture properties of materials for nuclear applications, where she worked within the faculties of metallurgy, mechanical engineering and condensed matter theory. It was here that Jassel first developed her programming skills using C++, Fortran, Python and SQL. This experience supported her in making her transition into the commercial realm, and at current her work at IBM is focused on delivering Proof of Concepts for cross-industry analytical solutions. At Imperial College London, Jassel founded an international summer school and conference on materials science and communications and also participated in a significant amount of science communication work, including presenting on the Discovery channel. Jassel is a passionate advocate of disseminating academic science within the public realm and regularly speaks for organisations such as Soapbox Science.

Karola Graupner & Alexei Mulko – Government Operations Research Scheme

Karola currently acts as an Operational Researcher at the Ministry of Justice, where she is involved in analysing statistics relating to the Criminal Justice system. Her academic background sits in physics, and she completed her PhD at Queen’s University Belfast. Following on from her studies, Karola continued to operate in a HE setting both as a Research Associate at Loughborough and as Assistant Laboratory Manager and the University of Oxford. She also holds a PGCE, and thus her varied background means that she is happy to advise people from a range of perspectives when it comes to answering the question What’s next? following the completion of your PhD.

Alexei holds a PhD in Mathematics from the Lobachevski State University (Russia). His area of research was systems of differential equations with periodic functions, existence of limit cycles and stationary points and analytical structure of the systems’ first integrals. Prior to this, Alexei completed an MSc in Financial Engineering from Birkbeck, where his area of research was commodities and commodity derivatives pricing. Within GORS, he worked as an operational researcher at the Department for Education (DfE) and later – Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC). He is the leading analyst in carbon pricing at DECC and his work consists of developing pricing models and providing modelling advice across the government as well as driving the EU ETS policy development via analysis, impact assessments and engagement with the government and external stakeholders.

Judith McMarron – Elekta

Judith acts as functional lead within her team at Elekta and also works closely with the company’s Regulatory and Quality Assurance group. Prior to her commercial career, Judith studied a wide range of core physics and maths at The University of Manchester before moving onto The University of Edinburgh where she completed her PhD in Elementary Particle Physics, which was part of a project with CERN.

Stephen Harrison – Capco

As a consultant within the Innovation & Digital practises at Capco, Stephen delivers large complex programs that intersect innovation, strategy, technology and financial services. Stephen has been lead developer and product owner for a number of pieces of software, including both mobile and web-based applications for retail banks and internally at Capco. He is also part of the Digital R&D team, exploring new and leading-edge technologies such as machine learning, Blockchain and big data analysis. He has a 1:1 in Astrophysics, and a PhD in Theoretical Physics, both from University College London.

Notes by Aimee Wilde, Employer Engagement Officer, King’s Careers & Employability

The Francis Crick Institute PhD studentships – Spring Call for Applications

The Francis Crick Institute has launched a second call for applications to its four-year PhD Programme for entry in September 2016.

If you are a graduate/master’s student with a background in biological sciences, physics, mathematics, computer science and/or chemistry and are interested in undertaking a PhD programme, please Click here, or visit the Crick website, for details.

Students are invited to apply by noon, Wednesday 30 March 2016.  More information about the studentships can also be found on the King’s intranet.

The Francis Crick Institute Four Year PhD Studentships 2016

The Francis Crick Institute are looking for 45 exceptional students to join their four year Crick PhD Programme starting in September 2016.

The application deadline is 12 noon GMT Wednesday 11th Nov 2015.

Please click on the image below for more information.

2016_Crick_PhD_Poster2

Protein Biochemist – Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research (NIBR)

**This post is over a year old but may help you identify employers, job titles or skills you need to research your next posting**

 

Interesting job. If you have not already seen it you may wish to sign up for King’s Jobonline through the careers website.

Recruiter: Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Ltd
Salary: TBC
Location: Horsham
Job sector: Scientific Services
Job type: Permanent
Date posted: 25/09/2012
Company Logo
How to apply
Name:
Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Ltd
Info for Applicants:
Apply with:
Online
Deadline for applications:
Not specified

Protein Biochemist to join the Respiratory Disease Area responsible for supporting research activities in target and drug discovery, focusing primarily on biotherapeutics.

Short term Postdocs in Japan

**This post is over a year old but may help you identify employers, job titles or skills you need to research your next posting**

JSPS London Postdoctoral Fellowship for Foreign Researchers (Short Term) Application Deadline: Monday 3rd December 2012 Fellowships must be started between 1st May 2013 to 31st March 2014.

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) is the leading research funding agency in Japan, established by the Japanese Government for the purpose of contributing to the advancement of science. Our Postdoctoral Fellowship for Foreign Researchers (Short Term) provides the opportunity for researchers based outside of Japan to conduct collaborative research activities with leading research groups at Japanese Universities and Research Institutions for visits of between 1 to 12 months. Eligible applicants need to be either within 2 years of finishing their PhD at the time of applying to start their fellowship in Japan or have obtained their PhD after 2 April 2007. Eligible research fields are not limited.

Please visit the JSPS London website here for further information:

http://www.jsps.org/funding/2012/09/postdoctoral-fellowship-for-foreign-researchers-short-term.html