What is your background?
I am a pharmacist. I trained in Industry, worked in the NHS, locum-ed in community pharmacy (I still do this) then did a PhD.
What initially attracted you to your job?
Being able to direct my own research programme
Define your job?
Teaching, admin, research, marking, dealing with student problems. supporting careers, supporting recruitment, more research, more teaching, getting involved in lots of aspects of University community life.....lots of freedom, lots of deadlines, lots of pressure, lots of fun (usually).
Can you walk me through your day to day activities?
No two days are the same although they always start with a black coffee.
How has your job changed in the last 5 to 10 years?
More defined, more structured more corporate approach. More involvement in management type issues for me and more HR and legal things to be aware of.
What are the key issues facing your sector?
Lack of pharmacists coming into academia currently.
How does government legislation affect your job?
In many ways.....everything from DDA guiding how we run exams to the outcome of the Shipman Enquiry shaping what we teach. Fitness to Practice agenda within healthcare is a big factor at the moment.
What impact has technology had on your job?
Made it easier but made it more frantic as everyone sends their requests for help, information and action via email. No control over when things arrive!
What are the best things and worst things about your job?
Best -academic freedom -we need to cherish and maintain this.
Worst - sometimes feeling like I am doing the job of 10. No strategic planning of people's workloads and no slack cut to get on with research.
Do you have any horror stories?
Oh yes many!
What attributes do you need/ what are you looking for when hiring someone in your role?
Flexibility and self direction
What are your tips/ advice for those starting out?
Make contacts and networks for teaching and research. Be nice to students -without them we are stuck.