What comes to mind when somebody says ‘work experience’? Endless hours manning the photocopying machine? Coffee making duty for days on end? These were the things that people had warned me about. Therefore, I entered my week of work experience at Malvern with these warnings in my mind.

Happily, I couldn’t have been more wrong about what work experience at Malvern would entail. It completely threw my pre-conceived ideas out of the window.

Firstly, the staff amazed me. Everyone I met was incredibly friendly and helpful, as well as dedicated to their work. They also had the patience of saints – which was needed when trying to explain to me the functions of the wide range of instruments that they produce. This seems like a good time to add that I apologise for all of the scientific errors that will occur in the next few paragraphs – I am a complete novice when it comes to this!

NatashaI was blown away by the massive range of activities that were put on for me by Lisa (Biopharmaceutical Portfolio Manager), who arranged my schedule for the week. There was always something for me to do. Over the course of the week I learnt about the importance of social media in communicating with cutomers with Sarah (Social Media Manager) and discovered the necessity of successful online marketing with Rosie (Online Marketing Campaign Manager). I even watched a live Webinar Masterclass on the Mastersizer 3000 with Rosie and Anne (Product Technical Specialist)

Production of the majority of instruments takes place at the UK headquarters, so I was lucky enough to be able to assist with the building of a Mastersizer 3000 under the guidance of Hazel and Lynn in the Production team, whose skill and dexterity amazed me. I then accompanied the Mastersizer 3000 and the Zetasizer Nano-ZS through the rigorous testing process that each instrument undergoes before it can be delivered to the customer. Luckily, they both passed – which meant that I hadn’t messed anything up – phew!

Later in the week, I spent time in the labs with Carolyn (Laboratory Supervisor), who explained to me the functions of each of the instruments- no mean feat when you consider the complexity of the instruments and my complete lack of knowledge about any of it! She also helped me to use a Mastersizer 3000E, so I could experience what it’s like to use one of the instuments.

Finally,  Hanna (Principal Appilcations Engineer) showed me the Archimedes. She allowed me to re-run some of the tests that she had done, altering the L.O.D. (limit of detection) for the results in order to measure the impact that it made on the concentration of the particles.

A massive thank you to everyone at Malvern for making me feel so welcome and for giving up time in order to share your expertise with me. I really appreciate everything you have done.

And I didn’t even see a photocopier all week!

For more information on Careers at Malvern, click here.