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St Benedict's Catholic School

St Benedict's
Catholic School

Career Profiles

 

Environmental Scientist

Environmental Scientist

Oliver Moore, Class of 2012

Higher Education Subject and University: 

BSc Environmental Earth Science (2012-2016) and MSc Environmental Monitoring and Analysis (2015-2016) (both at Aberystwyth University)

Current Job: 

PhD Student at the University of Manchester

Brief Career History: 

Achieved a 2:1 in my BSc and a Distinction in my MSc. Worked as a Laboratory Analyst from 2016 to 2018. Started my PhD in September 2018 and expect to complete in March 2022. 

What do you love about your job: 

The freedom to pursue my interests, to work with distinguished scientists, to learn advanced skills and techniques and to travel (for fieldwork and conferences). 

What three pieces of advice would you give someone thinking of a career in Environmental Science:

  1. Get your driving licence ASAP! Most jobs in the environmental sector require one for fieldwork so I can't state this enough. I left learning to drive until quite late and as a result I was locked-out of many jobs for which I was otherwise fully qualified for. Friends of mine who were less academically qualified than me (i.e. had a weaker BSc and didn't do an MSc) but already had a driving licence, didn't have this problem. Also its easier to learn when your younger, so even if you're not planning to get a car until after university, I would still strongly advise learning at age 17-18 if possible.
  2. Look up summer-internship and year-in-industry placements offered by environmental and geo-technical consultancy companies. Having this kind of work experience will significantly help you in the job market post-graduation. The company may even offer you a job to go straight into after you graduate. 
  3. If you have the opportunity to spend a semester or a year abroad - take it! This is something I deeply regret not doing and I would advise this to all students applying to university for any subject.  

How did St Benedict’s help you into your present role: 

As someone on the autistic spectrum (mild Asperger's Syndrome) the support offered to me at St Benedicts was very important. This came in the form of in-class learning support assistants and a good system in place which could identify and implement my exam requirements.  

Favourite memory from your time at St Benedict’s: 

This would be my sixth form years. In A-level Geography and History I learnt so much about the world we live in and this not only helped me in further studies but also made me a well-informed citizen. For example, one of my A-Level History units was on "British political and economic history 1945-2007" - though this is not so relevant to environmental sciences, what I learned in this unit significantly (still!) helps me understand current affairs. 

Three words to sum up an average working day: 

Varied, challenging, stimulating. 

 

Professor, Head of Medical Education

Professor, Head of Medical Education - Warwick Medical School

Colin MacDougall, Class of 1987

Higher Education Subject and University:

Newcastle (University of Newcastle upon Tyne at the time – now changed to just Newcastle!) - Medicine

Current Job:

Professor, Head of Medical Education

Brief Career History:

Aug 1992-Aug 1993 Pre-registration ‘house’ jobs;

Ashington and Newcastle.

Aug 1993 - Jan 1996        General Professional Training; Northern Region Paediatric SHO programme. General & Community Paediatrics, Neonatology and Paediatric Cardiology

Feb 1996 - Feb 2002        Higher Specialist Training; Northern Region Paediatric HST/SpR programme,. General, Community & Neonatal Paediatrics, Paediatric Infectious diseases, allergy, ITU and endocrinology

(Sept 1998-Aug 2000 Education Fellow Sunderland Royal Hospital)

Apr 2002 – July 2010       Leicester Warwick Medical Schools & University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust. Senior Clinical Lecturer in Medical Education and Honorary Consultant Paediatrician.

Aug 2010 – Sept 2015     Warwick Medical School & University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust. Deputy Head, Warwick MBChB, Warwick Medical School. Academic Lead for Learning and Teaching.

Sept 2015 -         Warwick Medical School & University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust. Professor (Professorial Clinical Teaching Fellow until Sept 2018) and Honorary Consultant Paediatrician. Head of Medical Education, Warwick Medical School.     

What do you love about your job:

Seeing enthusiastic new graduates succeed on their journey to becoming the next generation of doctors!

What three pieces of advice would you give someone thinking of a career in medicine:

  1. Don’t be too fixed in your planning – I set off to be a clinical doctor and now am mostly an educationalist!
  2. Do stuff you enjoy – I love being a doctor but I also love teaching – and started doing more and more (mainly for fun)… and it became my career!
  3. Remember that everything you do (whether it is direct care, training others or whatever) should be about how it will benefit patients

How did St Benedict’s help you into your present role:

St Benedict’s gave me the opportunity to learn and get the grades I needed – but never ‘hot housed’ me. If I was focused and wanting to work, there was all the support I needed, but the motivation had (rightly) to come from me. Learning was about me and what I wanted from it and not about what others wanted or how it would look for the school.

Favourite memory from your time at St Benedict’s:

Some of my A level Chemistry was more ‘explosive’ than was perhaps intended, or would probably be allowed today!

Three words to sum up an average working day:

Complex, Busy, Rewarding

 Solicitor - Property Law

Solicitor - Property Law

Luke Stockings, Class of 2009

Higher Education Subject and University:

Nottingham Trent University – LL.B Law Degree / Nottingham Law School – Legal Practice Course.

Current Job:

Solicitor, specialising in residential property, commercial property, and corporate acquisitions.

Brief Career History:

I graduated with a 2:1 in my LL.B Law degree. After leaving Nottingham Law School with my LPC (Commendation), I started work at a law firm in Market Harborough that specialise in residential property transactions. From there, I moved to Rudlings Wakelam Solicitors in Bury St. Edmunds where I became a Trainee Solicitor and qualified as a Solicitor with the firm. I now work for Fairhurst Menuhin Solicitors, based in Newmarket and Haverhill specialising in residential property, commercial property and corporate acquisitions.

What do you love about your job: 

A vast client-base varying from first-time buyers of a residential property, to commercial clients leasing shops in the high street, to Directors of a successful business looking to sell their business or acquire new businesses. No two days are the same, and I am constantly learning and testing myself. I am constantly networking with fellow professionals and learning from experienced solicitors.

What three pieces of advice would you give someone thinking of a career as a Solicitor:

  1. Try to get as much work experience as possible – most people will come away with a 2:1 Degree or higher, and a Commendation or higher on the LPC. You need to separate yourself from the rest by volunteering your time to experience how law firms operate in practice

  2. Work hard, but maintain a good work / social life balance. A successful solicitor is a well-rounded individual that is good with a wide variety of clients with different needs.

  3. Understand that there will be difficult days – there will always be something you don’t know. Don’t be afraid to ask someone with more experience.

How did St Benedict’s help you into your present role:

My time at St. Benedict’s was very important to me. Sixth form was the starting point in taking control of my own time and diary. This is particularly important when heading to University. The variety of sports that the school offers is beneficial as participating in sports at University is a great way of making friends.

Favourite memory from your time at St Benedict’s:

Captaining the school football team, before being called up to represent both West Suffolk and Suffolk county level at football. It was from this that I was called up in to Tottenham academy.

Three words to sum up an average working day:

Varied, Rewarding, Stimulating.

Investment Banker

Investment Banker

Nick Bigg, Class of 2015

Higher Education Subject and University:

Royal Holloway University of London, First Class Honours in Business and Management (With Year In Industry)

Current Job:

Investment Banker

Brief Career History:

Part of my course included a year in business which I did at a brokerage firm in London, I then did short internships in other areas of finance, before securing a 6 month internship with an Investment Bank.

What do you love about your job:

The fast paced and stimulating nature of the job as well as working with CEO's of big companies.

What three pieces of advice would you give someone thinking of a career as a investment banking: 

  1. Try and get as much experience as you can 
  2. Network very hard through LinkedIn - find people who may have gone to your school/uni and reach out to them
  3. Read around regarding the areas in investment banking and the various roles within it (It's not all BUY SELL BUY SELL)

How did St Benedict’s help you into your present role:

It is where I first learnt the value of hard work which has been the main principle in getting my role. 

Favourite memory from your time at St Benedict’s:

Hosting the school talent show was a great moment!

Three words to sum up an average working day:

Busy, Stimulating and Exciting 

 

 Head of Events & Exhibitions, Department for International Trade - Civil Service

Head of Events & Exhibitions, Department for International Trade - Civil Service

Dominic McNeice, Class of 1996

Higher Education Subject and University:

University of Leicester, Geography BSC

Current Job:

Head of Events & Exhibitions, Department for International Trade Defence & Security Organisation

Brief Career History:

Joined the Ministry of Defence as a direct graduate entrant civil servant working on an RAF base in Cambridgeshire as part of an integrated civilian and military team providing supply chain support to two aircraft. This job gave me a fantastic introduction into life as a civil servant and in particular working with service personnel in mixed teams. I was able to make the most of a lot of training opportunities which helped me to focus on a career pathway in the civil service which concentrated on Project Management. After taking a sabbatical to travel to New Zealand and Australia, I moved departments within the MOD working in communications and event project management. This role has evolved over time through departmental changes, and a promotion or two into the role I have today.

What do you love about your job:

I love the variety and high profile nature of my job. Although I have nearly 14 years’ experience in this type of role now, no job is ever the same twice. Coupled with the opportunity to work with Ministers and senior Government officials in the UK and overseas plus VIPs from a variety of countries – my team were responsible for the equipment displays at the NATO Summit held in Wales in 2014. The sense of pride in delivering a job well done on a major event is still hugely fulfilling – and I still really enjoy travelling and experiencing the different cultures of the places we hold events in. Best places I have been to in this job so far… Chile, India and Kazakhstan.

What three pieces of advice would you give someone thinking of a career as a Civil Servant:
 
The modern Civil Service is quite different to the one I joined back in 2001, and requires people to be able to multi-task and keep many plates spinning. I would encourage anyone considering the civil service as a career to look into the wide range of jobs across the wide range of departments – my role is very different to that of someone working in trade policy for example. The Civil Service also now offers opportunities such as internships and apprenticeships which provide a great way of experiencing the work of the departments and beginning a career, so it is definitely worth looking into these. Lastly keep an eye on world and UK events and take an interest in what is happening, as it drives the work of the departments.
 
How did St Benedict’s help you into your present role:
 
I look back very fondly on my time at St Benedict’s, and was the last of my family to go there after my two older sisters. The school and teachers when I was there and I am sure is the case today, gave me a fantastic base to learn and experience the world. Life as a teenager is not always the easiest and St Benedict’s always provided strong support and room to grow as a person. My studies in English, Geography and History with the support of some excellent and memorable teachers encouraged me to go onto study at university which in turn led me to work in the Civil Service. My time at St. Benedict’s also gifted my some lifelong friends who I still remain close to today.
 
Favourite memory from your time at St Benedict’s:
 
Too many to go into, but either an English field trip to Dorset whilst in the VIth Form, or being part of a perennially poor performing rugby side, who on the back of a brutally heavy defeat in arctic blizzard conditions, certainly gave me the ability to smile in the face of adversity.
 
Three words to sum up an average working day:
 
Pressure, variety, and more important fun!