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Microbiology From June 2018 newsletter

What's it like to be a placement student at Campden BRI?

Every year we offer placements to undergraduate students studying food-related subjects to provide them with practical experience of working in the food industry. We asked some of our current placement students about their experiences.

Q: Why did you choose to spend your placement year at Campden BRI?

Abi, biochemistry placement student: I thought the placement would provide me with an opportunity to learn about an exciting sector that I previously didn’t know much about. I knew that I would get practical experience in a working lab which is what I was looking for.

David, placement student in microscopy: Campden BRI seemed like the sort of lab environment that would really suit me, and it seemed to offer experiences that I could use in my later career.

Q: What did a typical day at Campden BRI involve?

Peter, placement student in processing support: My main role is developing and testing back of pack cooking instructions. It’s important work as recently there has been a food poisoning outbreak caused by incorrect cooking instructions. I have also had the opportunity to get involved with member funded research, member interest groups and offsite factory trials.

Q: What were your initial thoughts about Campden BRI?

Konrad, chemistry and biochemistry placement student: The workplace is friendly and supportive and everyone made me feel welcome. I was happy that I received an induction for every aspect of my job which helped to ease me into the role.

Q: What have been your greatest achievements?

Olivera, Erasmus placement student working in virology: The confidence I developed related to research oriented thinking as well as the practical performance. That included contributing to Campden BRI gaining UKAS accreditation for virus testing, a project I was involved in almost since the beginning.

Ellie, placement student working in food manufacturing technologies: Developing a tool which helped companies to improve their products to make them healthier and more nutritious for the consumer. As part of this project I also developed a reduced calorie ice cream and reduced sugar cheesecake to demonstrate how the tool can be used.

Q: In what way has your placement year surprised you the most?

Kieran, placement student in microbiology: This placement has surprised me at how much my confidence has developed over the past 12 months - not only in myself but in my scientific ability in the lab. I now feel that the placement has fully prepared me for my final year at university and my research project.