The ACGT recently welcomed Jessika Samuels to the team as a research intern. Jessika is responsible for the maintenance of the ACGT database of biosciences research skills, techniques and specialised equipment of scientists at the University of Witwatersrand, University of Pretoria, CSIR, University of Johannesburg and University of Limpopo.
She is currently enrolled as an MSc student with the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), specialising in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology – specifically abalone research. This KZN native also holds a BSc (Hons) from UKZN and has recently relocated to Gauteng.
Jessika says she was most attracted to the concept of helping scientists in the field. “If you have a way to make contacts, meet new people that are doing the same thing that you are doing and find out about the latest techniques – it can really help you to go further. By working at the ACGT I really feel like I am helping people”, she says
This being her first job, Jessika also believes that her position at the ACGT will give her a great opportunity to plan her career path. “I wanted to stay in science, but not necessarily in the lab. I am also considering going for my PhD and being at the ACGT has given me an opportunity to get some experience in the administrative side of research first before I commit to it”.
She is also very excited about the exposure that she will get to the many different branches within her area of interest – a factor that will help her decide where she would like to focus in her own career.