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Case Study: Lauren

Personal details
Degree:Statistics Profile picture
School(s): School of Mathematics and Statistics
Year of Graduation:Jun-2004
National of: United Kingdom
Employment details
Organisation: Forensic Science Service
Job title: Statistician
Occupational Sector: Statistics
What has been your route to getting your current position?

St Andrews degree, followed by PhD in medical statistics at Newcastle University. This is my first job!

What does your job involve ?

I am part of the Statistics and Interpretation group in the research and development side of the Forensic Science Service. My main area of work is with DNA developing new methods for the analysis of DNA stains when there is more than one contributor. I also help with training non-statisticians in the current methods.

What are the best bits of your job ?

Working in a very interesting field – and knowing that the research I am doing will be put into good use straight away!

Why were you successful?

It was necessary to have a PhD in statistics for my job – experience with the highs and lows of research a must! I spent time during my degrees developing my transferable skills – presentations, team work, working independently, positions of responsibility, working with non-statisticians – could not have been more valuable in job applications!

What skills/ knowledge from your degree have you found particularly helpful in this role?

My degree gave me a solid foundation in statistical theory across a range of topics. When I started my PhD I was in quite a good position - when I came across a new problem I often had an inkling of where to start. Some of the topics I studied at undergraduate level have also been quite helpful in my current job.

What advice would you give to students wishing to follow the same path?

Take advantage of any extra courses or opportunities to develop new skills while doing your degree(s).