We caught up with Amy who secured a fantastic industrial placement with GlaxoSmithKline. We discovered how she used her International Relations degree to pursue a career in global health improvements and hear her top tips for members looking to follow in her footsteps!
Why did you choose your company?
I chose GlaxoSmithKline as a company, and the Communications and Government Affairs Industrial Placement in particular because the key responsibilities of forming policy by identifying political trends ties in perfectly with my degree and allows me to put into practice my passion for policy, communication and the advancement of society through helping people. GSK are committed to high quality customer and patient care and are focused on research and global health improvements. On a more personal level, the International Relations element of my degree has compelled me to pursue a placement that not only helps me but helps others also. Coming from a family that have pursued careers in renal dialysis and mental health, it is ingrained within me to do my utmost to be involved in the welfare of my community, extending to my career. In another capacity, my East African origin has meant that GSK has been a positive influence on my nations of Kenya and Tanzania through the introduction of revolutionary Malaria and HIV/AIDs treatment as well as making it accessible to all at a time where these conditions were rife in my homelands. The possibility of being centrally involved in the creation and accessibility of lifesaving medicine really is the unending source of motivation that brings me joy in this role.
What was the hardest part of the application process?
For me, I would say the hardest part of the application process was the very end, at the 'Final Assessment Centre Stage'. I found it particularly challenging because in writing, it is easier to convey my skills and strengths and I did not want my nervousness to get the better of me when presenting myself face-to-face. On top of this, being around other shortlisted candidates really set in how high the competition was, but I feel staying true to myself is what ironically enabled me to stand out.
What 3 top tips would you give to other Bright Network members applying to role?
1. Don't be afraid of applying to top firms + companies in the fear that you lack experience or the 'right' grades. The way the application process is designed means that a lot of the assessment is based on you as a person and the depth of your determination from here going forward.
2. Organisation is key! You may find yourself applying to several internships and placements at the same time, so ensuring you have categorised each job role, company, upcoming deadlines and scheduled interviews is really important.
3. Practice makes perfect! Sit down with family or friends and go over possible interview questions, especially the ones you find difficult to answer. In addition to this, do your research on the companies you have applied to so you are knowledgeable on the interview day or assessment centre.
How did Bright Network help?
Bright Network is where I first heard about my placement so I will start with their plethora of available placements! They are also set out in a very clear format that makes it easy to know the job description, entry criteria and any other important information. In the midst of applying, there's also super interesting Events to attend and build your professional network such as the Diversity and Inclusion Event.