Erin, 3rd Year, Biological Sciences student discusses her summer internship

I asked Erin a few questions about the BLS summer internship she attained through Lancaster University…

Who supervised the internship?

Dr Robert Lauder

What was the research focus?

I worked on a few different projects. One involved the use of Protein A as a biomarker for Staphylococcus aureus infection in ICU patients, with another focusing on the presence of Alpha-haemolysin in the urine of ICU patients and how this changes over time. I also assisted in testing for cross reactivity in Ebola virus proteins as part of a project for the World Health Organisation.

What did a typical day involve?

I mostly ran protein gels then carried out Western blots to test a range of samples, but also carried out a few ELISA plates and was briefly introduced to the technique of mass spectrometry.

What did you enjoy about the internship?

I enjoyed the independent nature of the lab work, as well as the fact I was getting paid to do something I like.

What didn’t you enjoy about the internship?

Sometimes lab work can be unpredictable and it feels like you’re doing a lot of work then achieving nothing, but overall I still kind of liked doing the work anyway.

How did you acquire the internship?

It was advertised through the BLS department and I just applied by sending my CV and covering letter.

Any further comments?

For people who like lab work this is the thing for you, I would recommend it to anyone, especially people interested in doing a research Masters or a career in research.