Ever wanted to know what we get up to on the RSC graduate scheme? In this blog, members of our graduate scheme describe some of the interesting (or unusual!) activities and projects they are working on, as well as what it is like to work in a variety of departments across the RSC.

Find out more about the RSC Graduate Scheme here

Flo - Public Affairs

741bbfeb6e59103ab37ddb748de52599-huge-hyAfter a very busy final three months in the Education team, I have now moved over to Public Affairs, which began with a crash course in UK politics! I have enjoyed all of my projects in Education, and it feels strange to leave it behind. Some of my highlights were organising a webinar for ChemNet, facilitating an update to our Parents’ Guide booklet, and managing our forum for teachers, Talk Chemistry. I was also tasked with project managing our involvement at the Cambridge Science Festival...

04a0a2af8cbbe82e3ada6e8b6ee0881c-huge-imWhilst very excited at the prospect of our first ‘team grad’ project, I was also a little daunted by how much there was to organise! Our theme was our 175th anniversary, where we designed ‘a journey through the history of chemistry’. We had six stands in total, but I’ll highlight a couple: one was devoted to colour chemistry, where we had a Spectroscopy in a Suitcase kit. This scheme gives students the chance to learn about spectroscopy through hands-on experience, rather than a textbook. On the polymers stand, we made bouncy balls and seaweed spheres. On our final stand, we were extracting DNA from strawberries! Luckily it wasn’t just us grads on the day – we had 23 wonderful staff volunteers that made the event a success.
The Public Affairs team are based in our London office, so I am currently sitting with the Science team in Cambridge, and I’m looking forward to doing some collaborative work with them. I visit Burlington House once a week and the rest of the time I can pick up the phone! The great thing about moving teams is that you get to know so many more people across the organisation that all have different areas of expertise, so there is always someone to direct your question to.
I didn’t have to worry about sitting at the wrong desk on my first day as I was sent straight to the Houses of Parliament, for SET for Britain 2016! This event sees early career scientists presenting their work to MPs - encouraging and promoting young scientists in this setting is really important, and all of the relevant learned societies were there to support it. I even spotted Jeremy Corbyn speaking to one of his constituents! Now I’m back in the office, I’ve written an article for RSC news, and I’ve been brushing up on my knowledge of UK politics and the upcoming EU referendum. It’s getting easier, sort of!
In other news, I’ve now written two articles for Chemistry World and I’m currently working on my first book review. Last night was the RSC Spring quiz, and the grad team did pretty well – we were only four points behind the winners. I’m now looking forward to a trip to Amsterdam over the Easter weekend and starting my warm weather triathlon training. Bring on the summer!
Flo is a Graduate currently working in the Public Affairs Team on the Royal Society of Chemistry's Graduate Scheme. To see if we are currently recruiting for the RSC Graduate Scheme click here
Posted by Florence Greatrix on Mar 24, 2016 9:57 AM Europe/London

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