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Pharmacology BSc(Hons): Placement case study

Dayo Leduwe, Parenteral Nutrition Unit assistant at ITHpharma

  • Name: Dayo Leduwe
  • Course: Pharmacology BSc(Hons)
  • Placement role: Parenteral Nutrition Unit assistant
  • Placement company: ITHpharma
  • Year: 2014/15

Why did you decide to do an industrial placement as part of your degree?

  • To get some experience in the pharmaceutical industry and to have a better understanding of how a pharmaceutical firm operates.
  • To see what I can go on to do with my degree.
  • To aid me in getting a solid career job after my education.

What was the process for getting a placement and what support did you get from the University?

I searched for pharmaceutical companies around the area and either called or emailed those companies asking if they offer work placement. The Placements Team helped me with my CV and also provided me with the list of jobs that I can apply too.

What does your placement role involve?

My role involves dealing with TPN (total parenteral nutrition) products, getting orders ready, inputting patient and hospital data onto the system, packaging, checking and sealing the final product.

How is your typical day – any specific projects were you involved with?

On a typical day I work both in the office and in the lab. My work at the office is to order from hospitals and pharmacy's to get the prescriptions ready for which I input the information onto our data base including patient name, name of the hospital and type of TPN bag ordered. I also check the stability of TPN formulations and help customers track/confirm orders.

In the lab, I weigh PN bags, help with the packaging, watch over the lab and make sure the room is kept as clean as possible.

What key elements of your job will involve what you had learned from your course?

Nutrition, drug side effects, disinfection, sterilisation and basic maths calculating the ratio the ingredients can be used in a TPN bag.

From your experience working at your placement employer is there anything that you will utilise when you go back to your study (if this is applicable)?

I will utilise what I've learned about disinfection and sterilisation, and the expiry life of different drugs.

How do you feel that your placement has benefited your course?

It has shown me how far I could go with my degree. I've learned more about disinfection and sterilisation, and I've been able to revise on how to calculate moles and other calculations.

Are there any other benefits of doing a placement?

  • Get to meet some new and interesting people.
  • Able to make friends and connections in the pharmaceutical industry.
  • Able to save up money for my final year as I am paid during my placement.
  • Able to revise over what I've learnt in my second year and be will equipped for the third.

What job will you be seeking when you graduate?

I look to go further with my degree and go through a NHS Science Training programme and to pursue a career in the NHS or a private pharmacy/hospital.

What advice would you give to the students who are thinking of applying for placement?

Do not think of it as a job, go the extra mile to show you're interested to know more about how the company operates and what they do. Never be afraid to ask questions, sacrifice some time to come in early if possible, and make sure the company is based on what you want to do when you graduate.

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