Medicine apprentice begins new role in Biology

Monday 10 June 2024
Sam Wraight on his last day at the Medical School.

The School would like to congratulate former Science Technician Apprentice Sam Wraight on his recent transition to a new role as a Lab Technician at the School of Biology. Sam is one of three School of Medicine modern apprentices who have moved on to permanent positions within the University in the past year. As he prepared for this next step in his career, Sam reflected on his time working in Medicine and how it has prepared him for what lies ahead.

Sam began his apprenticeship in December of 2022 after being encouraged to apply by a close friend already working elsewhere in the University. Having studied forensics in college, he had an existing interest in science and viewed this as a helpful means of gaining hands-on experience while clarifying where his career interests lay.

Sam spent his apprenticeship working predominantly with Senior Medical Teaching Technician Henry Rae and Lab Manager Dr Claire Sneddon. This included assisting with the setting up and running of practical sessions with current and aspiring medical students, making a range of chemical solutions, and conducting routine but essential lab safety and maintenance tasks. He enjoyed expanding his scientific knowledge through these roles and believes his understanding of how science labs function effectively will be a significant advantage in his next position.

Sam’s favourite aspect of his apprenticeship – and that which taught him the most, he says – was working with students during practical sessions. Having never been in a teaching role before, and with a self-described “more reserved” personality, he felt this part of the job challenged him to become more comfortable engaging with students. This also improved his communication skills, a major asset in any role.

Alongside the “work experience” portion of the programme, Sam was also required to complete coursework reflecting on his professional development. He reports that these tasks significantly improved writing skills and prompted him to think more intentionally about what he was learning and how it could be relevant to his future career. This, combined with his success in the lab, helped him build the confidence in his abilities he needed to apply for his Biology Science Technician role.

Although we wish him well in his future endeavours, Sam will be missed in the Medical School. Colleagues particularly appreciated his “keenness to learn and try his hand at whatever was asked of him,” says apprenticeship mentor Helen Clark (Medicine Operations and Facilities Support Manager.)

Sam is similarly looking forward to his next step while reflecting warmly on his time in Medicine. He described the experience as a “perfect stepping stone” from which he has learned “more than I ever expected.” He urged those considering an apprenticeship to “just go for it,” calling the decision “the best choice I could have made.”

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