|Sensient Flavors Ltd|
|Science and research|
|Large business (250+ employees)|
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A day in the life of a Analytical Chemist in the United Kingdom
I was originally interested in the Pharmaceutical Industry. However, I am glad I looked at other options because I love working in the Food Industry and really enjoy my job.
Briefly describe the organisation you work for
A leading global manufacturer and marketer of flavours.
What do you do?
Analytical chemist for the Innovation Team. I analyse flavours, beverages, foodstuffs etc, for investigatory and regulatory purposes. I use GC-MS, GC-FID, SPME-GC-MS and HPLC mainly for volatile and non-volatile compound analysis.
Reflecting upon your past employment and education, what led you to your current career choice?
I undertook a placement as an R&D Intern within the Extracts Department at my current company whilst completing my MChem. After I finished my placement, I was offered a position in the Analytical Team.
Is your current job sector different from what you thought you would enter when you graduated?
Yes. I was originally interested in the Pharmaceutical Industry. However, I am glad I looked at other options because I love working in the Food Industry and really enjoy my job.
Describe your most memorable day at work
My most memorable day in work so far was the first time I was told that one of my developments is going to being used by a well-known brewery in one of their new products. This gave me a great feeling of satisfaction and it is nice to be able to see your work in it's intended application in a final product in the pub!
What extracurricular activities did you undertake at university and what transferable skills did you develop through these?
I was not part of any societies whilst at University. I had a part-time job working 16 hours per week which taught me how to behave in a work environment and taught me a lot about time-management - being able to prioritise time between university and work was important.
I undertook a 3-week paid internship at the Chemistry Department at The University of York over the summer between 2nd and 3rd year which helped me in my interview for my current job.
What would you like to do next with your career?
I would like to move up the chain to Senior Analytical Chemist or become a Lab Manager.
What top tips do you have for York students preparing for today’s job market and life after graduation?
Take any opportunity to network with other people in other companies.
Keep your linkedin profile up-to-date.
Apply for a job even if it isn't exactly what you think you want - interviews are a good way to ask questions about the industry, company and specific job which will give you an idea on whether it would suit you or not. Even realising what you do not want to do is useful.
When starting a new job, try to get experience in as many departments as possible to expand your experience and knowledge - this will make you a better employee and your own job a lot easier if you understand the basis of other peoples roles.
What topics from students are you happy to answer questions on?
I am happy to answer any questions from job applications, R&D, Analytical and/or the Food Industry.
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