£50m Randox Centres of Excellence launched in Northern Ireland
£50m Randox Centres of Excellence launched in Northern Ireland
A record £50 million investment which will deliver cutting-edge technologies to diagnose conditions like cancer, heart conditions and infectious diseases has been announced by Northern Ireland diagnostics company Randox Laboratories and Invest Northern Ireland.
This major project involves the establishment of three Centres of Excellence, enabling Randox R&D scientists to work collaboratively with colleagues from Queen’s University Belfast and Ulster University. The centres are being officially launched today at the Randox Science Park. The ceremony will include a keynote address from Sir John Bell, who chaired the UK Government’s Life Sciences Industrial Strategy Board.
Advanced diagnostics have been identified as key to delivering sustainable improvement to healthcare systems struggling to cope with increasing levels of chronic and preventable conditions. Having been focused in this field for over 36 years, Randox has a successful track record of developing new and innovative tests – examples include assessing those at risk of Alzheimer’s disease and genetic cardiac conditions, to promote and enable preventive treatment, and a new clinically-approved test to diagnose prediabetes.
Managing Director of Randox Laboratories, Dr Peter FitzGerald, who today launched the three Centres of Excellence, said;
“When almost a quarter of the deaths of people under 75 in the UK are considered preventable, we need to ask ourselves what can be done to improve healthcare outcomes. There is an undeniable case for radical change in the way healthcare is delivered, and sophisticated diagnostics will be at the fore of this revolution.
“Enabling earlier and more accurate diagnosis, to identify those at the earliest stages of illness, ideally before the onset of any symptoms, is a game-changer. Through early intervention we can restrict the development of chronic conditions and improve people’s lives. Our view of the future is one where people are empowered through earlier diagnosis to stay healthier for longer, and where healthcare systems are freed to deliver quality services to patients. Our announcement today demonstrates our continuing commitment in this field.
“We are grateful for the support offered by Invest NI and look forward to addressing these pressing healthcare needs.”
The Centres of Excellence will focus respectively on clinical diagnostics, engineering for biosciences and quality control. The project, which will strengthen collaborative partnerships between Randox, Queen’s University Belfast and Ulster University, will accelerate the development of new technologies and drive healthcare improvements regionally, nationally and across the globe.
Of the £23m of support offered by Invest NI, £5m will go toward research projects at Ulster University and Queen’s University Belfast.
Welcoming the investment, Alastair Hamilton, Chief Executive of Invest NI said;
“Randox has a long history of investing heavily in innovation and R&D which has enabled it to create a globally competitive export driven business, capable of developing world leading research. This major investment will enable Randox to perform cutting-edge R&D which has the potential to revolutionise the global healthcare industry. This is excellent news for Northern Ireland’s life and health sciences sector. Northern Ireland is enjoying a growing international reputation as a region of expertise and knowledge in key areas such as Diagnostics, Precision Medicine and Advanced Manufacturing. The three new Centres of Excellence will help build on this and enhance Northern Ireland’s credibility, provide supply chain opportunities, and encourage knowledge transfer with our universities.”
Sir John Bell, commenting on the potential for the UK Life Sciences sector said;
“The life sciences industry represents one of the dominant economic sectors in the UK, and one with considerable potential for growth. However, whilst we have many natural strengths we cannot afford to be complacent. We must strive to optimise our science base, to encourage collaboration across academia, industry and the NHS, and grow our industrial capabilities. To do so we need to use our extensive data sets to best effect, and have in place a strong skills strategy. Success requires vision and drive. To that end I would like to congratulate Dr FitzGerald and Randox in the establishment of these three R&D collaborative Centres of Excellence – these are assets of national standing and will have a meaningful impact in enabling earlier and more accurate diagnosis, driving improvements in patient care, regionally, nationally and globally. They are leaders in this field, committed to innovation, and I wish them every success.”
Professor Jim McLaughlin, Director of Ulster University’s Nanotechnology and Integrated Bioengineering Centre, added;
“This very welcome investment enables pioneering Randox-inspired engineering capacity at Ulster University and reflects our research commitment to the life sciences industry. From nanotechnology to the development of systems that will enable large scale laboratory capability to be produced in the palm of your hand, the partnership brings shared industry and academic research excellence from the lab into the marketplace. Life sciences is a vital economic sector locally and this collaboration will advance diagnostics and ultimately enhance patient health outcomes.”
Dr David Jess, Senior Lecturer at Queen’s University Belfast School of Mathematics and Physics, added;
“The Randox Centres of Excellence will allow Queen’s University Belfast to continue to deliver cutting-edge and world leading research. We look forward to collaborating further with industry to develop pioneering research, focused on the needs of society.”
Invest NI’s R&D support is part funded by ERDF under the EU Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme 2014 – 2020.
For further information please contact the Randox PR Team: phone 028 9442 2413 or email email@example.com
We Are Randox | John Fitzgerald wins Ulster University awards for Master’s degree project with Randox
Here at Randox, we’re proud of the talented and innovative teams we have at all our sites. One of our talented engineers at Randox Teoranta recently won a prize for his final year university project in collaboration with Randox. John Fitzgerald, an Electronic Design Engineer, was presented with two awards from Ulster University on Thursday 7th December 2017 – the Civica Prize for excellence in his final project and the Institute of Engineering Technology Prize for achieving the highest grades in his class.
We caught up with John to hear all about it;
A very well done on your awards, John! Tell us about your final project for which you won the Civica Prize.
Firstly it is important to note that my final year project was conducted in conjunction with Randox Teoranta. Without the support, resources and encouragement from the exceptional Research & Development Engineering team here in Dungloe, my project would not have been such a success.
My final year project centred on the design of an industry-standard compact dry bath incubator, designed for the heating and cooling of small volume samples. With a simple and compact design, broad and precise temperature range, the intended use of the product was for bench-top laboratory incubations. The design also incorporated innovative, yet modest, capacitive touch pad controls and a digital display to provide confident temperature selection and accuracy.
This design project required design capabilities in three core engineering disciplines, electronic, embedded and mechanical engineering.
Were you surprised to learn you’d won an award for the project?
Yes, definitely! I was surprised when I received an email at the end of November, informing me that I was to receive the award. I can recall the quality of projects that were on show so this was a complete surprise to me.
I invested a great effort in this project and I’m proud of the personal and academic goals I’ve attained, however, the works achieved would not have been possible without the generous investment of advice from various different sources. I wish to take this opportunity to express my genuine appreciation and thanks to them all.
Thank you to Randox – the industrial knowledge and resources they provided for this wrk added significantly to the quality and relevance of my project to the real world. A special word of thanks, too, should also be afforded to my final year supervisor in Ulster University for the consistent academic support he delivered throughout the course of this MEng final year project.
Did you always want to be an engineer?
To be perfectly honest, the answer to this question is no. I was very uncertain for a long time what career I wanted to pursue as a secondary school student. I was never really exposed to the engineering profession and the wide variety of career paths it can lead to so engineering wasn’t something I immediately thought of when I was thinking of careers I would enjoy.
My father has a lot to answer for though – he was a tool-maker by trade and he instilled a significant interest in engineering and basic electronics in me, and is probably one of the primary reasons I felt a career in electronic engineering was the correct path for me. I decided to apply for my university placement year at Randox Teoranta in the Electronic Engineering team.
After just a few months in to my placement at Randox Teoranta, I knew I had made the correct career choice. I was Randox Teoranta R&D Engineering’s first university placement student, and that I could live at home in Donegal for the year and still receive a first class industrial experience.
How did you find your placement year at Randox?
My placement experience at Randox Teoranta was first class. I was afforded every opportunity to develop and grow my engineering skills. As my competency grew, so did my responsibilities and the complexity of jobs afforded to me.
The team of engineers in Randox Teoranta are exceptional professionals and provided excellent guidance to me as a young student engineer. The work I was tasked with was challenging and relevant and a considerable amount of the work I contributed to, remains in some form in the final Misano analyser that is manufactured today in Dungloe.
I cannot stress enough how important my placement year at Randox Teoranta was for me upon returning for my final two years of university. It provided me with a clear career path and I discovered a passion for Printed Circuit Board Design that I would not have been exposed to, if it were not for this placement.
I was extremely grateful to be offered a graduate position during my placement year on completion of my degree. This security made my final two years at university much more comfortable and also allowed me to discuss with the company the potential to complete my final year project in conjunction with Randox Teoranta. The opportunity to continue my learning and professional development as part of such a progressive and diverse engineering environment was an easy decision to make. As an added bonus, I am able to live at home, in the most beautiful part of the country and engage in an extremely rewarding and challenging profession in my field of study all at the same time. I consider myself very fortunate.
Tell us what a typical day is like in your role as Electronic Engineer.
One of the reasons I enjoy being an Electronic Engineer with Randox Teoranta to such a high degree, is the same reason that makes this question quite difficult to answer.
It is hard to categorise a typical day in my role as an Electronic Engineer in Randox Teoranta. I spend my time on a wide variety of duties or tasks depending on the design needs of the engineering team. I could be spending my time designing circuit schematics for new PCB designs, I could be producing the printed circuit board layout of designed circuit schematics, I could be testing new sensors, electronic parts or manufactured PCB’s to verify their performance, I could be engaging in verification and validation work for a new analyser, I could be engaging in the formation of critical design reports, the list can go on and on.
As the cliché goes, “every day is different”, something which is definitely applicable in this scenario.
What advice would you give to young people considering visiting the Randox Teoranta open day on Fri 22nd December?
I would encourage any young person with a remote interest in a career in Science or Engineering to attend the open day on Fri 22nd December. I believe they will be surprised as to the wide variety of professions and opportunities available at their doorstep.
A conversation with an experienced professional could ignite a spark which could provide clarity as to what they would like to pursue in further education, and in turn professionally. This is an opportunity I wish I was afforded as a young person growing up in rural Donegal, and I consider it an opportunity not to be missed for young people with a genuine interest in these exciting professional fields.
From all the staff at Randox, congratulations to John on this fantastic achievement. We look forward to seeing the pioneering engineering work you will continue to be part of in the future.
The Randox Teoranta Open Morning is on Friday 22nd December 2017 from 10am – 2pm at Randox Teoranta, Meenmore, Dungloe, Co. Donegal.
To find out more tel: +353 7495 22600 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Pictured with John Fitzgerald (centre) is Dr. Robert McMurray, course director for MEng Engineering at Ulster University (left), and Angela Canavan, Managing Director of Civica who was present to award the Civica prize (right).
Your dream career awaits at Randox Teoranta
This festive season, Dungloe-based Randox Teoranta has a message for ambitious students and graduates – that achieving your career dream is possible, and it might not be as far away as you think.
The global healthcare diagnostics firm today launched its annual recruitment drive by asking life scientists, engineers and software developers to reflect on the career dreams they had as children, and to consider the world-class careers on offer in rural Donegal. In previous years, these areas of industry have suffered most from mass emigration of the university graduates who have had to look elsewhere for jobs in their respective fields.
Randox Teoranta wants to let students, graduates and experienced professionals across the island of Ireland, and those further afield who have moved abroad to find work, know that they can find the career they’ve always dreamed of close to home.
Ciaran Richardson, Head of R&D at Randox Teoranta, commented;
“At Randox Teoranta we have scientists working on a range of research projects, including the development of innovative health technologies capable of diagnosing stroke, gastrointestinal disorders and chronic kidney disease. This is following ground breaking developments in 2016 where scientists in Randox Teoranta were involved in the launch of a pioneering new test used to determine a patient’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
“In addition to those interested in human health we also have scientists who when they were younger wished to pursue a career in the animal research and veterinary science world. These scientists within our veterinary department are involved in the development of novel multiplex tests used to monitor disease spread and improve animal welfare.
“We have software developers who are working with revolutionary technologies – augmented and mixed reality headsets for example – that in their youth they could only have dreamed of”.
“And we have engineers who, as children, loved to take apart their electronic toys and piece them back together. They’re now using their talent to engineer machines which detect disease and save lives. I can think of no better use for their skillset and I’m incredibly proud that our biotechnology hub right here in rural Donegal means that young people from far and wide can achieve their career dreams.”
If you’re at school and currently thinking about university choices, a school leaver, student, graduate, or experienced professional, come along to Randox Teoranta’s Open Day on Friday 22nd December 2017. Parents of students are also welcome to visit the state-of-the-art site in Dungloe, Donegal, where visitors will be treated to an opportunity to view the facility and meet members of the Randox team.
Come and view our hub of pioneering research and development, where cutting-edge science, technology and IT takes place. If you, or someone you know, is interested in a career in life sciences, engineering, software development or software testing, come along to Randox Teoranta on Friday 22nd December.
Don’t just dream it. Make it happen at Randox Teoranta.
The Randox Teoranta Open Morning is on Friday 22nd December 2017 from 10am – 2pm at Randox Teoranta, Meenmore, Dungloe, Co. Donegal.
To find out more tel: +353 7495 22600 or email: email@example.com
No booking is required.
We Are Randox | Randox Apprentice Rory McCloskey Wins Gold at National Competition
A Randox Engineer and Northern Regional College apprentice has been recognised as one of the UK’s most talented young tradesmen at an event organised by Worldskills UK.
Rory McCloskey (21) from Antrim was a gold medal winner at the UK National finals in Birmingham. He was competing with over 500 apprentices, exponents of 55 disciplines – as diverse as Aircraft Maintenance to 3D Game Design, Cabinet Making, Plumbing to Beauty Therapy and Cyber Security.
Rory was recognised for his expertise in Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Milling which involves programming, setting and running a modern CNC milling machine to accurately produce a component in a given timeframe.
His journey to the national finals started earlier this year with local College competitions. From here, he progressed through the regional heats and national semi-finals where he finished in the top six in the UK to qualify for the National Worldskills UK 2017 finals which were held in Birmingham from 16 – 18 November.
Rory is a Higher Level Apprentice and works in the engineering department of Randox Laboratories. As a Foundation Degree student at the College’s Ballymena campus, he was trained on state-of-the-art CNC engineering machinery and taught how to program and operate machines such as Mazek, DMG Mori and Doonson, equipment used in modern manufacturing companies throughout Northern Ireland. The College provides education and training in this technology to a wide range of companies, including Ryobi Aluminium Cating, Linamar Montupet, Hutchinson Engineering, Randox Laboratories, McAuley Engineering.
Congratulating Rory on his success, Professor Terri Scott, Chief Executive of Northern Regional College said:
“The award is a great credit to Rory and all the engineering staff at the College and is just reward for all Rory’s hard work and dedication.
“The College has a proud and prestigious tradition of education and training in the field of engineering and I am delighted to see that our provision continues to deliver a consistently high standard.”
Dr Peter FitzGerald, Founder and Managing Director of Randox Laboratories, commented;
“We are incredibly proud of Rory and what he has achieved at the National Worldskills UK 2017 finals. Our apprentices from both the Northern and Southern Regional College are such talented individuals and so we are delighted to be able to offer them the opportunity to carry out ground-breaking research and development with us as they grow and develop in their careers.
“And the apprenticeship scheme is highly valued by the company – just as our students benefit from the time they spend with us, so too do we as a modern and innovative healthcare firm benefit from the fresh perspectives and forward-thinking ideas these students bring to Randox.
“Passionate and hard-working people like Rory make Randox what it is today. We’re extremely grateful for his contributions to the engineering team here and equally proud of his achievements. Congratulations Rory.”
Northern Regional College was well represented at the National Worldskills UK finals. Rory was one of seven students from the College’s Ballymena, Coleraine and Newtownabbey campuses to qualify for the final stage of the competition.
The other College finalists were: Dean Boyle, who was rewarded a bronze medal in CNC Milling; Matthew McLaughlin, who was highly commended in Graphic Design; Ryan Moon and Richard Woods (Mechatronics); James McCaughey (IT Software); Patrick McCloskey (Carpentry).
For further information about Rory’s award or to find our more about our apprenticeship programme please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Randox proud to announce sponsorship of Engineering Technology Teachers’ Association conference in Donegal
Diagnostic engineering company, Randox Teoranta, has been officially announced as the main sponsor of the Engineering Technology Teachers’ Association (ETTA) conference. Randox Teoranta, based in Donegal’s coastal town Dungloe, is the global diagnostic company’s hub for world-leading engineering and life sciences in the west of Ireland.
Randox Teoranta’s sponsorship of the renowned ETTA awards comes as it aims to attract Ireland’s top engineers and scientists to join the team which is based in its next-generation life science, engineering, research and manufacturing centre in Donegal.
The company is recognised globally for its commitment to improving healthcare and technology, and in the past year alone scientists and engineers at Randox Teoranta have developed a revolutionary test for Alzheimer’s disease, designed drug testing software to be used by police officers in criminal investigations, and engineered new technologies with the ability to detect disease and save lives. The team is currently working on cutting-edge research for key health issues including kidney disease, thyroid disease and gastrointestinal disorders.
ETTA is a voluntarily administered association which represents teachers of Engineering Technology and Metalwork. Its focus is to promote technology as an exciting career choice for young people, providing a National Engineering Awards programme for second level students. It works in conjunction with Engineers Ireland, third level colleges and the Department of Education to ensure the highest standards of Engineering Technology education.
In attendance on the launch evening in the Letterkenny Institute of Technology were Christina Mc Fadden, Breid Gallagher and Daniel Melly representing Randox Teoranta; Denis Mc Fadden and Jim Morrison from LYIT; and Dr. Martin Gormley, Director of Schools in Donegal ETB. There was also an excellent turnout from branch members on the night.
Chairperson of the Donegal Branch of the ETTA, Sean Mc Fadden said,
“We would like to acknowledge Randox Teoranta and express our sincere thanks on becoming the main sponsors for the ETTA National Conference 2017, bringing their wealth of knowledge, resources and expertise in the field of engineering to the table. Randox has been bringing high-end engineering employment to Donegal since it opened and are always enthusiastic to develop links with the Education sector here. The expansion of Randox Teoranta is an exciting prospect for many of our students with world-class engineering and technology now right on their doorstep.”
Christina Mc Fadden, Engineering Manager at Randox Teoranta said:
“We’re delighted to support these awards which honour the very best engineering students in Ireland. Randox’s success owes a great deal to our team of engineers who hold a prestigious MacRobert Award and are constantly driving new innovations that transform patients’ lives around the world. Since opening our R&D and manufacturing centre in Dungloe in 2010, we’ve provided unrivalled opportunities to mechanical, software and electrical engineers. We are committed to encouraging more people to see engineering as a viable career option, and then to ensure our very talented students are able to pursue outstanding careers here on this island.”
The ETTA Conference and Awards Ceremony will be hosted by Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT) on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th November 2017.
For further information about the Randox Teoranta sponsorship of the ETTA Awards, please contact Randox PR by phoning 028 9445 1016 or emailing RandoxPR@randox.com
Students become Randox scientists and engineers for a day at STEM Challenge event
Over 50 students from across Northern Ireland celebrated International Women in Engineering Day on Friday 23rd June, by taking part in the first annual STEM Challenge event, hosted by global healthcare firm Randox Laboratories.
The students, from the Belfast Model School for Girls and Victoria College Belfast, joined female scientists, engineers, software developers and mathematicians from Randox, for a number of interactive activities organised to mark the special day, which is aimed at tackling the gender divide in engineering and other science, technology and maths-related disciplines.
Speaking at the event was Professor Máire O’Neill of Queen’s University Belfast – Professor in the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and former recipient of the British Female Inventors and Innovators Network’s British Female Inventor of the Year award.
Professor O’Neill commented;
“I’m really delighted to be here today at the Randox STEM event and to have the opportunity to speak with girls who could potentially be the next generation of scientists, mathematicians, software developers, and significantly, on today, International Women in Engineering Day, the next generation of female engineers.
“Engineering is not a job for men. The representation of engineering as a “masculine” job is a socially constructed one, and at that, an inaccurate one. The skills required for engineering are found just as readily in the young girls I see here before me today as they are in their male classmates – patience, analysis, communication, empathy and problem solving.
“Enabling these young girls here today to meet with female engineers from Randox provides them with really positive role models who can share their experiences and hopefully encourage the students to really consider what it is to be an engineer.”
The students had the opportunity to ask the Randox representatives all the questions they wanted to know about working in STEM, and were treated to a tour of the facilities at the recently acquired Randox Science Park, which has become the new headquarters for the company.
Linda Magee, Head of Human Resources at Randox added;
“We want young girls to know that engineering is as much a viable career choice for them as it is for their male counterparts. At Randox our female to male ratio of engineers is significantly higher than the UK average – 15.8% as opposed to only 9% – but we still have a long way to go and we feel quite strongly that we can utilize Randox’s status within the Northern Irish business sector to really spearhead a paradigm shift in how we view engineering disciplines.”
Mark Gray, Biology Teacher at Victoria College Belfast said;
“We were delighted to hear that Randox were hosting a schools event in support of their STEM campaign, to celebrate International Women in Engineering Day. It’s important to give girls the chance to get involved and gain hands-on experience within these different disciplines and deliver the message from an early age that they have the same opportunities as boys in every part of life, especially their careers.
“By giving them more information and explaining the benefits of STEM we’re opening the doors for girls into areas that they might not have considered before. We need to make certain that young girls have the right support and experience to choose the right job in their future professions and a campaign like this offers us the perfect opportunity to do so.”
The Randox STEM challenge on International Women in Engineering Day, Friday 23rd June, was the culmination of a week-long initiative celebrating women in the fields of science, technology, engineering and maths, and in leadership roles across Northern Ireland.
For further information contact Randox PR on 028 9445 1016 or email RandoxPR@randox.com
Randox Role Models
Providing young women with positive role models is crucial if we are to inspire them to take up a career in science, technology, engineering or maths.
That’s why we’re sharing the stories and experiences of our own female scientists, software developers, engineers and mathematicians, and those of STEMinists from other key employers and organisations within Northern Ireland.
We hope that we by sharing their experiences we can encourage young women across the country to truly consider a career in STEM.
Our Randox Scientists
Dr Sarah Gildea, Senior Research and Development Scientist, Randox Laboratories
Aimee Anderson, Biomedical Scientist, Randox Clinical Laboratory Services
Dr Kenneth Martin, Senior Research and Development Scientist, Randox Laboratories
Lauren Cairns, Science Placement Student, Randox Laboratories
Nadine Cutliffe, Research and Development Scientist, Randox Laboratories
Ann-Marie Jennings, Laboratory Manager, Randox Clinical Laboratory Services
Georgia Mitchell, Graduate R&D Scientist, Randox Laboratories
Nadine McKerrow, Graduate R&D Scientist, Randox Laboratories
Patrcyja Roszkowska, Science Placement Student, Randox Laboratories
Rebecca Aldous, Graduate R&D Scientist, Randox Laboratories
Misha Piracha, Clinical Team Leader, Randox Clinical Laboratory Services
James Breen, Laboratory Analyst, Randox Clinical Laboratory Services
Tanya McKinty, Data Analyst, Randox Laboratories
Linda Magee, Biochemist and Global Human Resources Manager, Randox Laboratories
Marie McGarvey, Clinical Research Scientist, Randox Laboratories
Our Randox Technology Team
Andrew Sharp, Software Development Team Leader, Randox Laboratories
Jo-Ann Pearson, Software Developer, Randox Laboratories
Rebecca Long, IT Placement Student, Randox Laboratories
Clare Calgie, Software Developer, Randox Laboratories
Our Randox Engineers
Maryrose McLoone, Mechanical Design Engineer, Randox Laboratories
Harisree Padmaja Kumari Sreekantan Nair, Electrical and Electronic Design Engineer, Randox Laboratories
Our Randox Mathematicians
Emma McElnea, Pricing Analyst, Randox Laboratories
Our partners in STEM
Joanne Stuart, Director of Development, Catalyst Inc.
Dr Christabel Evans, Thermosets and Thermoplastics Research Associate, Ulster University School of Engineering
Professor Tom Millar, Astrophysicist and Director of Queen's University Belfast SWAN Initiative
Melissa Duddy, Manufacturing Engineer, Bombardier
Charlene Armstrong, Aerothermal Engineer, Bombardier
Johann Muldoon MBE, Director, Manor Architects
Celebrating women in STEM
The Randox STEM Challenge is aimed at tackling the gender divide and skills gap in the science, technology, engineering and maths industry. On average in the UK women make up just 9% of the engineering workforce. Though Randox is bucking the trend with almost 16% of female engineers, it is still keen to challenge itself to encourage more women to view it as a viable career option.
Click on each Randox STEM initiative below to read more about it.
At Randox we have launched a new returnship scheme which is being supported by the NI Chamber of Commerce. The six-month programme is designed for people who have had a break of two years or more. It will challenge society’s misconceptions surrounding career breaks and support both men and women in restarting their careers.
Providing young women with positive role models is crucial if we are to inspire them to take up a career in science, technology, engineering or maths. That's why Randox has teamed up with other key employers and organisations within Northern Ireland to celebrate the work of STEMinists across the country and share their stories.
Over 50 students from Northern Ireland took part in the first annual ‘STEM Challenge’ hosted at the Randox Science Park. The event, held on International Women in Engineering Day, rounded off a week during which global diagnostics company Randox unveiled a number of initiatives to celebrate and promote women in STEM.
Careers at Randox Teoranta
World-leading science is happening in Donegal.
It's happening at Randox Teoranta
Tá eolaíocht cheannródaíoch ag tarlú i nDún na nGall.
Tá sé ag tarlú in Randox Teoranta.
Our talented team is growing and we have job opportunities available in:
Randox has invested heavily in developing its facilities in Dungloe, Donegal into a next-generation life science, engineering, research and manufacturing centre. In the past year alone the team have developed a revolutionary test for Alzheimer’s disease, designed drug testing software to be used by police officers in criminal investigations, and engineered new technologies with the ability to detect disease and save lives. This year our team continue to work on cutting-edge research for key health issues including kidney disease, thyroid disease and gastrointestinal disorders.
One of the draws for me when making the decision to move from India to Donegal was knowing that I would be able to experience such a unique lifestyle – working on world-leading science whilst also enjoying the benefits of living in an area of outstanding natural beauty. I don’t think there are many places where you can work on research into Alzheimer’s disease one day, and the next climb to the top of a mountain to witness a view as awe-inspiring as the one from the top of Slieve League. It truly is a great place to work.
I returned to Donegal after having worked in the Irish Equine Centre in Kildare for thirteen years. I now work in Randox’s veterinary diagnostics division – I’m delighted to have been able to find work in my area of expertise so close to where I grew up, and for a company as prestigious as the sponsor of the world-famous Randox Health Grand National. It’s great that Randox is providing highly-skilled jobs for people like me, and we also offer student and graduate placements so our team is a great mix of ages, experiences and interests.
I studied at LYIT as a mature student, graduated in 2013, and started work in Randox Teoranta in September that same year. I was delighted to find such fantastic work in Donegal – I live in Letterkenny so it’s only a short journey to Dungloe. I’m able to take part in lots of social activities with my family and friends, including school events and music festivals, and we always look forward to the annual Wild Atlantic Adventure Race and The Mary from Dungloe Festival, which are both sponsored by Randox Teoranta.
I first came to Randox Teoranta as a motivated final year engineering student searching for the perfect place to begin my career, and my first impression didn’t disappoint. It’s a top class facility and is packed with the latest technology. I work alongside scientists and engineers who are the best in the business – working on the development of tests for the early diagnosis of kidney and liver disease for example. Here in Randox Teoranta we develop diagnostic products that save lives, and I’m so proud to be a part of it.
I did a Biology degree in Italy and then spent three years at Trinity College Dublin completing a PhD in Biochemistry and Immunology. I heard about Randox in 2015 when I was working on a blood cancer immunological assay. I liked the sound of working in a company that had such a global impact – an incredible 5% of the world’s population, which is over 370 million people, receive diagnosis using our products. It is a real privilege that in my job I am able to meet and work with other world-leading scientists from all over the globe.
We Are Randox | Randox QUB and UU placement students making their mark on global healthcare
A female scientist who has been working on the development of a test that diagnoses sepsis is one of the award-winning students in this year’s university placement scheme with Randox Laboratories.
The breakthrough sepsis test is being created by the Randox Molecular Diagnostics team, which Sarah-Louise Morrow from Belfast joined in September. Her innovative work saw her win third place in the Science category at the company’s annual Pinnacle Placement Awards.
Sarah-Louise, a Biochemistry student from Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), said:
“Sepsis is known as the ‘silent killer’, and the faster you can diagnose it the better for the patient. It was so inspiring working with a team here at Randox who are making such valuable contributions to global health and I couldn’t be happier that something I’ve worked on could save lives in the future.”
Now in its 26th year, the Randox placement programme is recognised internationally for providing world-class opportunities for students and graduates – one of the core reasons that the global diagnostics company was established in 1982. Thirty years on, its founder Dr Peter FitzGerald remains as committed as ever to championing new talent and driving innovation.
Between them, this year’s Randox placement students have spearheaded a number of new designs and projects which are being implemented across the company.
Catherine McCooke, a QUB Electrical and Electronic Engineering student designed a new UV radiation exposure detection mechanism; Shannon McKee, a Business Studies student at Ulster University, conducted highly advantageous market research into emerging markets such as Jamaica and Puerto Rico; and Katie Lawther, a QUB Microbiology student introduced a new cellular tissue storage and tracking system.
The title of Randox Placement Student of the Year 2017 went to Robin Walsh, a QUB student from Lisburn who developed a new chemiluminescence signal reagent which is currently being validated and will be shortly released for production.
The 22 year old’s new product delivers significantly positive effects on the chemistry testing carried out by the Randox New Technology team. It increases test output by a factor of three, saving costs and time which ultimately enables the faster delivery of results for patients.
On receiving his award Robin, who studies Chemical Engineering, said;
“The Randox Placement Programme has far exceeded my expectations. My manager and everyone else in my team have been so supportive and encouraging. I worked on high-level projects I wouldn’t have dreamed possible for a placement student to be involved with. I have gained so much experience during my time as I have been able to translate what I’ve learnt in university into a true working environment. I’ve no doubt this experience will set me apart from the competition in the future.”
Congratulating Robin and his fellow placement students, Jolene Jamison, Randox Placement Co-Ordinator said;
“Taking part in a meaningful placement scheme is one of the most important things a student can do. The young people who are selected to join our programme are given the opportunity to carry out ground-breaking research and development, often working with pioneering technologies that are exported globally.
“The scheme is highly valued by the company so it’s important to take time at its end to celebrate our students. We’re very proud of them all – their contributions are going to make a real difference to global health.”
For the first time two of the Randox Placement award winners were selected from the APEX scheme that Randox runs with UU and QUB. This innovative scheme, which enables applicants to submit “video CVS” on social media to showcase their own personalities, includes paid, full-time summer work experience after a student’s first year of studies, a year-long placement, and a full-time job offer upon graduating, should they obtain a 2:1 or above.
Catherine McCooke who won the overall prize in Engineering said:
“After winning a place through the APEX scheme, being awarded the top prize in Engineering at Randox is unbelievable. It’s particularly important to me because I feel very passionately that women should see that there are no barriers to succeeding as an engineer. I’ve worked incredibly hard with some inspiring people, and have felt respected and valued every step of the way.”
The incoming 2017 summer work experience marks the highest intake of APEX students in Randox so far. Anyone interested in applying for the 2018-19 scheme should email email@example.com.
The top students in the Randox Pinnacle Placement Awards 2017 were:
Robin Walsh, Queen’s University Chemical Engineering – New Technology Evaluation Chemistry Team at Randox
Katie Lawther, Queen’s University Microbiology – Monoclonal Development Team at Randox
Sarah-Louise Morrow, Queen’s University Biochemistry – Molecular Diagnostics Team at Randox
Catherine McCooke, Queen’s University Electrical and Electronic Engineering – R&D Engineering Team at Randox
Ruairi Laverty, Queen’s University Mechanical Engineering – R&D Engineering Team at Randox
Adam Fawcett, The Ulster University Electronic Engineering – Engineering Team at Randox
Shannon McKee, The Ulster University Business – Regional Sales Team at Randox
Martin Conway, The Ulster University Marketing – Marketing Team at Randox
Alastair McIlveen, Queen’s University Computer Science – IT Team at Randox
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