Student Case Study: Science Research Assistant (Endangered Species)

Name of Student:  Amy Goymer

Degree Subject:  Biological sciences

Job Title: Science Research Assistant (Endangered Species) SCP 5967

Company Name:  University of Exeter

Type of Internship:  Student Campus Partnerships (SCPs)  

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

Carry out laboratory work to obtain DNA sequences for meat sold as ‘eel’ to evaluate whether endangered species were being utilised in eel sushi products. Then collate the data to synthesise a paper for publication.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

Analysing enough samples to significantly contribute to the global collection (more than doubling it!) which will allow a much more rounded view of eel trade globally.

Were there any challenges and how did you overcome these?

Some samples were hard to collect usable data from due to being degraded by frying, cooking etc. But you just have to be persistent and go right from the beginning again and then some will just have a lucky round and give you results.

Skills Learnt: 

  • Ability to Work Under Pressure
  • Organisation
  • Leadership
  • Strategic Planning
  • Decision Making

Attributes Developed:

  • Logical thinking
  • Commercial Awareness
  • Confidence
  • Independence

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

This internship experience not only furthered my laboratory experience and was a good thing to talk about moving forward in my career, but also made me feel like I was contributing to global science as an individual rather than just learning things as a student. I also hope to publish the paper I wrote as part of the internship with help from my supervisor, which is a really cool outcome to reward the hard work put in. Ultimately, it was great to get paid for something that really interesting, fun, and allowed me to contribute to science.