Business analysis for young entrepreneurs and biology training for researchers.
As a BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnership PhD Student we get the opportunity to undertake an internship in any area. For my Professional Internship for PhD Students (PIPS) I went to Kilifi, Kenya to work at Pwani University (PU). With the help of staff and students in the university I got to set up a workshop on market research, help to facilitate the running of the AfriPlantSci2019 workshop, and meet a range of farmers and staff working hard to protect food security in coastal Africa.
Having carried out my undergraduate and all of my research experience at the University of East Anglia, I thought that travelling and meeting scientists and staff of PU would broaden my view on how science works elsewhere. The internship also allowed me to broaden skills in a range of areas such as workshop organisation, public speaking and commercial awareness. At PU I worked with both the school of Business and Economics to look into market analysis and business strategy, as well as the PUBReC to meet staff and see the challenges of agriculture in the area.
My work in the School of Business and Economics at PU was with Dr. Flaura Kidere and the Students of the Entrepreneurship Club. Under her mentorship I set up a workshop on Market Analysis including a range of different models and business could be analysed with real life examples. The difference with this workshop was that we tailored the business students of PU, but made it accessible to the students of other schools interested in business and commerce. 70 students signed up for the workshop and 50 students stuck it out despite looming exams and presented a business analysis they carried out to receive bronze, silver and gold awards.
My work with the biology department was focused on facilitating with the AfriPlantSci workshop 2019. AfriPlantSci was an ambitious workshop that taught bioinformatics, molecular biology and soft skills for science. Inside the remit of soft skills I also got to give a talk on critical thinking both for reading scientific literature, and mentorship of younger scientists. Naturally the ambitiousness of this workshop kept us busy but also in good spirits as the attendees were interesting and engaging scientists from a wide range of countries and the workshop was a great success!