We recently welcomed Heidi into XCellR8 for a week-long work experience. Here is what she had to say following her time in the animal-free testing world…

What made you want to do work experience at XCellR8?

I have always been interested in science, especially biology and chemistry, so working in a laboratory has always been something I have wanted to try out. Work experience was the perfect opportunity to do this, so I looked at working in the science field. I found XCellR8 and was excited since the key morals in the company aligned with mine. I feel strongly that animal testing is absolutely wrong and unnecessary on most occasions, so it was nice to find a company which was doing things to change the current system.

What were your day-to-day tasks during your work experience?

Throughout the day I would go between lab and office. In the office I had explanations on the different jobs there and what people did. For example, the people in Quality Assurance told me all about how they are there to make sure the quality of the lab work is up to the standard so it can be used elsewhere. I would also go into the lab and observe some of the scientists working. I also helped with little jobs in the lab and sometimes even did practicals of my own.

What were your highlights of working at XCellR8?

I loved the challenge of completing my own practical, getting to use all the equipment that I don’t have access to in my school’s labs. It was fun to play around with all the pieces of equipment and try to use them correctly using safe substances with the guidance of lab professionals. At the end I believe I completed the practical well, I felt I got an achievement of my own after learning all the processes before.

What was the most surprising thing you learnt at XCellR8?

The most surprising thing I learnt was how easy and effective it is to use alternative methods of testing which don’t use animals. I also find it surprising how so many companies still use these methods when more efficient and kinder ones exist.

Did you prefer working in the office or lab? Why?

I loved both places a lot; I found the atmosphere in each very welcoming and enjoyable. The office was very calm and friendly, everyone was chatty and helpful. However, I loved working in the lab even more, there were new and exciting activities going on and I was always learning even when I wasn’t doing hands on tasks. The people showing me around were brilliant and extremely helpful. It was really interesting seeing what goes on in a lab from day-to-day.

After your work experience here, do you want to explore the science industry more? If yes, in what capacity? What’s on the horizon for you?

After my work experience, I am definitely considering having a career in this field of science. Over the week I learnt how fun and exciting it can be to work for a company like this. I have also realized how important it is to me to look for companies or fields which do not use animals, like XCellR8. I am thinking of doing one or two science subjects for a level and most likely further.

Well we loved having you Heidi – keep in touch!