Sarah Clark

Your journey from Year 12 to where you are now:

While completing Honours in Chemistry, I found I loved talking about science (especially getting other people involved and excited) as much as I loved doing the research. So I fell into the world of Science Communication, moved to the ACT to complete further study with the Shell Questacon Science Circus, and now work to inspire the next generation of STEM innovators and entrepreneurs across Australia.

Any internships or work placements during your studies?

During my final undergraduate year, completed a Summer Research Scholarship in a lab I was considering for honours. This experience allowed me to meet some of the other researchers and experience what working in a research lab could be like, and actually contribute to science over my break!

Throughout honours I worked as a Laboratory Demonstrator in Chemistry, supporting and guiding first year students through their practical classes. At its most basic description, I had to simplify complex science for incoming learners. But it was here that I learnt to communicate with empathy and compassion to all students - a career altering experience that I wouldn't change for the world.

What about 'outside the classroom' ... what activities did you take part in outside of classes during your time at UoA?

I was a retail employee for years, in a field unrelated to science or science communication. But retail taught me service skills and people skills, as well as high levels of administrative organisation, and being able to juggle work with study was satisfying.

I dabbled in youth groups, science clubs and sports teams, all of which gave me insights to different people and perspectives outside my classes.

When thinking about future employment, what would be your "Top-3-Tips" for a new student about to embark on their University studies?

1) Choose a pathway or subjects that you find genuinely interesting. If you're not sure on a profession, that's okay! Stop worrying about the endpoint and enjoy the journey.
2) Take any opportunity you can that's extracurricular but related to your studies. Any clubs or organisations that are about for students are a great place to meet people and also gain leadership skills.
3) You'll likely have very different views on the world in three years’ time. Two years in employment and they will have changed again. You'll evolve, always. Be ready for it, and have fun reflecting as it happens.

What are your future career aspirations?

I want to continue a career with influence in STEM education. I'm considering further study in secondary teaching, with a view to create change in the public sector.

This experience allowed me to meet some of the other researchers and experience what working in a research lab could be like, and actually contribute to science over my break!
You'll likely have very different views on the world in three years’ time. Two years in employment and they will have changed again. You'll evolve, always. Be ready for it, and have fun reflecting as it happens.

Graduate profiles

Sarah Clark

Bachelor of Science (Molecular and Drug Design) with Honours in Chemistry
(Corporate Finance & Marketing)
Smart Skills Inspirator, Questacon Smart Skills Initiative

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