Biology student share experiences from internships in the Arctic
Biology student share experiences from internships in the Arctic

Internship ended, but a future technician is born

My internship is slowly coming to an end. There is no doubt that it has been a valuable experience, and I have gained a lot of new knowledge. When it comes to the biology, I think my main learning outcome has been in molecular biology. This is a field of biology that I didn’t really know too much about, and to be honest I never really thought it would be very relevant for me as my main interest is within terrestrial ecology. But as I’ve seen from some of the research in UNIS, being able to do molecular work opens up a lot of interesting opportunities, also in terrestrial biology. I also think that a general understanding of genetics will give me a better background for working with the scientific questions that I am interested in.

I have also worked on more general skills, such as analytical thinking, organisational skills and co-operating with colleagues. These skills will be valuable for me in my future job no matter what job it is. In addition, I have refreshed my mathematics and chemistry a little bit (and while so realising how soon these things disappear from my memory!) and learned more about lab safety and lab procedures.

Looking back at my expectations before starting the internship, I think they have definitely been met. My main goal was to gain new skills and experience working as a biologist. In this job I have done so many different tasks, which has taught me a lot. I didn’t have too much relevant experience for this kind of job, but hence an even bigger learning outcome. It would have been nice to know some more chemistry to understand more of what was going on with the nutrient analyser, for example, but I still feel like I learnt a lot.

Another benefit I have gotten from this internship is that I have realised that I actually really thrive with being a technician. I might want my future job to be more like a field technician, but I enjoy being a problem solver and dealing with technical equipment, and to be “the operating force” in research. I also really enjoy being a resource for people and working on different projects. I didn’t really realise that this is a possible role for me to have as a biologist, so I am thankful for having gotten this insight.

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