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 Karen O'Flaherty from ESERO Ireland to give some advice for people considering this job:
Read a lot its a great way to find new ways to express ideas. Write a lot, even if just for yourself, so that you get used to communicating your ideas on paper. Develop your time management skills that is crucial when working in an area that has very tight deadlines. Learn more languages its very helpful to have an insight into how people express themselves in different languages.
What are your interests?
The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with sophiscticated technology. These types prefer mentally stimulating environments and often pay close attention to developments in their chosen field.
What subjects did you take in school and how have these influenced your career path?
Biology & Chemisry were my favourites & influenced my choice of Science degree. I liked French & this was necessary to enter NUI Galway at the time. The subjects I chose & the course I chose gave me a lot of options. This, however was in 1986 & there are a lot more options available to students now.
In hindsight I would have chosen the same course or maybe Dietetics (or chosen dietetics as a post grad instead of food science). Either way - I might still be in the position I am in as diet & health have become very big issues for the food industry. I had no business subjects at school - I might have benefited from choosing at least one.