Budding scientists visit leading lab
Posted on 31 January 2017

Students at BTG Biocompatibles Lab

On Tuesday 24 January 2017 a group of budding scientists had the unique opportunity to visit a leading pharmaceutical organisation, who specialise in interventional medicine.  They went to the Biocompatibles site in Farnham, which is part of global organisation BTG where two important medicinal products are manufactured. One for the treatment of varicose veins and the other for treating liver cancer.  The first year students are all part of the College chemistry society and are planning their futures within a science sector.

Students were given a tour of the laboratory with demonstrations of a range of equipment, including high performance liquid chromatography and gas liquid chromatography analysers. They were given an insight into the cleanroom process and how staff are required to ‘gown up’. They heard about the different levels of sterilization that have to be adhered to and held informative discussions around what could happen if products are manufactured in a non-sterile location.

First Year Student, Thomas Hammond said, “Seeing the laboratory facilities and products coupled with an explanation and the techniques used to create them brought it to life. I enjoyed the tour in the analytical chemistry laboratory as this related to the chemistry we study at A level. Being in Year 13, I already know that I will be at university for the next few years, but in the longer term it has intrigued me to find out more about chemistry-related work after a degree.”

This was a fantastic trip and a real eye-opener into the extensive processes taken to research and manufacture medicinal products. Students heard from a range of employees within BTG covering a number of roles and differing education routes, from experienced graduates to a new apprentice!

Our Employability Coordinator, Laura Wakefield concluded, “Giving students the opportunity to visit a specialised laboratory and meet industry specialists, not only relates directly to their curriculum, but also creates the link between their studies and the potential careers they can aspire to go into. It was a fantastic event and hugely insightful for staff and students.”