Greta Medawar is a second-year Master of Biotechnology student at the University of Melbourne. She undertook a six-week internship with Illumina's ANZ marketing team, mapping out the landscape of Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS)-based cancer research in the region.
Greta said that her shared passion with Illumina to improve people’s lives through personalised targeted treatments drew her to the internship.
"I was excited to apply my knowledge of genomics, research and presentation skills to develop reports on molecular tumour tests and NGS cancer research leaders in Australia and New Zealand.
"I am determined on my path to become a scientist in the cancer research field, so working with Illumina’s team allowed me to grow, learn, and apply my skills and knowledge of genomics in a practical way."
Greta said the most valuable thing she took away from the internship was an understanding of the importance of workplace culture and value of clear communication.
"I quickly learned that asking for clarification whenever that a task is unclear is completely acceptable and it improves the relationship between an intern and a supervisor, and helped me develop my communication skills."
"This internship helped me to develop my professional network and emphasised the importance of creating these connections. I learned how to introduce myself, talk about my interests, knowledge, and skills with other team members, as well as asking questions and gaining a better understanding of the business."
Greta has developed a broader understanding of the genomics sector and the business side of the research as a result of the internship
"I now have experience in how to effectively apply scientific data into business analysis and studying trends, to develop a better understanding of genomics in the region."
"It also helped me understand research funding, whether through government grants, private funding, or through fundraising campaigns, and how these funds are used to facilitate research advancement and help improving lives of cancer patients."
As a result of the internship, Greta is now interested in exploring opportunities in genomics market research analysis once she graduates.
"I would like to say for other students considering applying for an Illumina internship, if you have the passion and interest in genomics research, and you want to work with highly experienced experts and leaders, then take the advantage of opportunities that come up – I am sure by the end of this internship you would have gained work experience, improved your network connections and have a clearer vision of your future."