I was fortunate enough to spend two years in an industry setting when working for Genzyme, now a Sanofi Company, in my home town of Oxford, UK. Although it was not pure research in a laboratory sense, the experience satisfied the pharmacological aspect of my career as I worked within their cold chain pharmacy and satisfied the science aspect of my career as the patients treated suffer from rare genetic lysosomal storage disorders. I gained insight into a very different setting of order and hierarchy and experiences just to how different everything worked in the industry world compared to the lab/bench, academic world. I was responsible for patients in England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Thus, I needed to learn about external dealings with pharmacy orders, suppliers, deliveries and appointment setting for many specialist departments at collaborating hospitals and dealing with individual patient needs as well as internal dealings within Genzyme departments such as IT for databases and accounting and finance for invoicing.
It was an extremely valuable first-hand experience on a real life application of scientific bench work and how it translates to literally save people’s lives.