Simone: Studying Sports Science

I applied to do my MSci Work Placement year at the Division of Exercise Science & Sports Medicine (ESSM) of the University of Cape Town (UCT) in South Africa.

ESSM is situated at the Sport Science Institute of South Africa (SSISA) and exists to promote a healthy, active lifestyle and optimal physical performance through innovative research, teaching, training, and clinical services. Overall, I really could not have asked for a better MSci Work Placement experience, everyone at ESSM was very welcoming.

ESSM is not only a centre of excellence when it comes to research and teaching but also a family that works together. The teamwork environment is what makes it such a successful working unit.

The specific research skills I acquired, such as equipment training, data analysis, scientific writing, interaction with study participants, and my social media experience are all transferable and invaluable to my future.

I also made friends for life, all in a breathtakingly beautiful city - Cape Town. My year in Cape Town would not have been possible without the generous award that I received under the Cathcart Scholarship, for which I'm truly grateful.

Christina: Researching Alzheimer's

I'm Christina and I did my work placement year at Eli Lilly in Surrey, researching Alzheimer's disease. This was very relevant to the Neuroscience degree I studied.

It was a brilliant experience working for this company - I was trained extensively in relevant techniques, attended research seminars and meetings and I gained more insight into how the disease affects families and carers, as well as the science behind Alzheimer's disease.

The lab team were extremely welcoming and there were many more students from other universities to interact or live with. 

There was a great social aspect to the company which included theatre trips in London, a football tournament in summer, a murder mystery night and outdoor gym classes every lunch time.


Amy: Studying Cell Biology & Anatomy

I'm an anatomy graduate who completed a MSci work placement at Clyde Biosciences based in BioCity Scotland. Clyde Biosciences is a drug screening company that tests new compounds on human induced pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes. Since graduating, I have been employed full time by Clyde Biosciences as a Technical and Operations Specialist. This role involves me completing experiments within the lab and representing the company by presenting my data at various international conferences and events.

As well as this, I received extensive business training and I am also involved in the business, commercialisation and financial aspect of the company as it continues to grow and have bases within the US and Japan.

Completing the MSci program has opened the door to many opportunities for me and my career - I highly recommend it for any undergraduate students!

Lauren: Studying Anatomy

I’ve graduated with an MSci in Anatomy and I spent my work placement at the Alderley Park site of AstraZeneca, a global pharmaceutical company. 

I worked as a bioscientist in the Translational Safety department, focussing on CNS and CVS safety, and was fortunate to experience both in vitro and in vivo labs, allowing me the chance to gain very different practical skill sets. Additionally, this placement hugely improved my confidence in presenting my research, both verbally and written, which was massively helpful on return to my final year at Glasgow.

Although I have ultimately decided to pursue a career prescribing medicines rather than making them (I’m going on to complete a degree in Medicine at Dundee), I thoroughly enjoyed my placement and was delighted that the foundation I had from my Anatomy degree was so valuable – even as the only Anatomy student on the AZ scheme!

I’d absolutely recommend the MSci work placement to future students; it’s hard work but definitely worth it.