Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Caitriona Jackman from Smart Futures to give some advice for people considering this job:

Caitriona Jackman

Planetary Scientist

Smart Futures

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Caitriona Jackman
If you are considering full-time scientific research, try to get a work placement in a university department so you can see first hand what it’s like. It’s a relatively relaxed, flexible environment, but there is a certain degree of self-motivation needed. 

So I would say you need to be able to push  yourself and be proactive in terms of setting up collaborations with other scientists etc.
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Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
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Alison Liddy - Product Development Engineer

Alison Lidddy is a Development Engineer with Cook Medical. 

My name is Alison Liddy and I work with Cook Medical as a Product Development Engineer. I started with Cook Medical almost two years ago, following positions with Roche and Boston Scientific’s R&D departments.

Undergraduate Degree

My undergraduate degree was a BSc in Chemistry and I studied Mathematics as my second subject. I also have a Masters Degree and PhD in Biochemical Engineering with work experience in the biotechnology and medical device industries as part of my studies.

Main Responsibilities 

My main responsibilities with Cook Medical include the management of research and development projects for the endoscopy business unit from the design phase to the manufacture of a commercial product.

This can include the design and testing of prototypes, seeking clinical input from doctors around the globe and patent publishing.

What to study

My advice to any student interested in pursuing a career in Med Tech is that an honours level science subject and honours maths at Leaving Certificate will really help when studying engineering and science at third level.

There are many ways of getting into the industry but the main thing to keep is mind is that commitment and passion for your studies and work goes a long way!

Article by: Smart Futures