Professional Internships for PhD Students (PIPS)

PIPS Q&A session (Dundee, 12 February 2019) - EASTBIO PIPS Co-ordinator Dr Caroline Pope is seen (first, left), with EASTBIO students

The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council is offering an exciting opportunity for any non-academic organisation to take advantage of fully funded Professional Internships for PhD Students (PIPS). Internships can be in any field or sector including industry; publishing; policy; clinical development; teaching; communications; business; management; marketing; and finance...

As part of the EASTBIO training programme, each Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council Doctoral Training Partnership student must complete a 12 week internship in a non-academic environment.

Benefits to your organisation:
• A high-calibre temporary resource to assist with a strategic project at no extra cost to the business
• A new resource to undertake smaller projects that might have been on hold or would not otherwise have been done
• Involvement with intelligent minds that will bring innovation, skills and knowledge to enhance your business success and performance
• Opportunities to get energy and fresh insights to a particular business area; a different perspective to problems and a new motivated member of the team
• Added value through interaction with Scottish Universities.

Benefits for the PhD students:
• PhD students undertaking a professional internship extend their educational experience
• An internship will help them to develop valuable transferrable skills and explore careers outside of academia
• An internship will provide them with a high-quality work experience that will increase their employability
• In exchange for their labour, the students will experience a ‘real-life’ situation in the workplace of their choice.

Dr Caroline Pope recently presented research evidence about the PIPS at the 2016 Researcher Education and Development Conference hosted by the University of Sheffield. Her talk “Doctoral internships - fun times but was it a good learning experience?" can be viewed here. She went on to publish on December 2017 the full version entitled "'Work wisdom' and the PhD: Exploring the Benefits of doctoral internships" on the Vitae website's Occasional Papers series.The article draws on research data from 65 postgraduate researchers from the EASTBIO DTP programme who carried out a doctoral internship as part of their doctoral training between 2013 and 2016. The research provides their views of emerging benefits of doctoral internships to Universities, employers and society at large.

The paper can be accessed via the Vitae website (for those who have individual or institutional Vitae membership) or found here.

To find out more, please email Dr Caroline Pope.