In this blog, we spoke to undergraduate student Annika Ramos who discusses her summer internship at PwC, experience at Queen Mary University of London and her plan to run for Vice President of Education at the University’s Student Union.
Annika joined Queen Mary in 2015 through the foundation programme and is currently studying Pharmaceutical Chemistry in the School of Biological and Chemical Sciences (SBCS).
Why did you decide to study Pharmaceutical Chemistry at Queen Mary?
I wanted to join Queen Mary ever since I attended one of the University tours. I fell in love with the campus and took up the opportunity to do the Foundation programme. I really wanted to get into Queen Mary, especially as it’s a Russell Group university and after the Foundation programme I got to do the course I wanted, which was Pharmaceutical Chemistry. It was also important for me to live on campus and be in London, as there are so many opportunities here.
How was your experience of the Foundation programme?
I found the programme really useful. Whilst we were studying similar subjects as A Levels, including Maths, Biology, Physics, Chemistry and English, the content was more complex so it was a really good starting point in terms of getting students used to what university is like and the independence that comes with it.
Tell us about your summer internship at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)
I did the internship last summer. I worked as a technology risk intern, with support from the University. I wanted to consider some options outside of Chemistry and labs so I started looking at some of the options available from the University and also visited the careers office. The team there really listened to what I wanted to do and suggested this role at PwC. They helped me through the application process including helping me review my CV, writing a cover letter and taking part in some practice interviews. It was a really good experience helping me to learn what working life is like. Being there encouraged me to be very proactive in taking responsibility and completing my work. I also took part in an in-house competition about the future of mobility. It wasn’t compulsory but a group of colleagues and I actually reached the final of this competition where we got to present our ideas to transport services such as TfL and experts within PwC.
What are your plans for the future?
I have received a graduate job offer from PwC, which I am considering but haven’t accepted yet as I feel I have more to offer the University before I graduate. That’s why I’m running for Vice President of Education at Queen Mary’s Student Union. I currently work as a student staff receptionist in the Student’s Union and have been really interested in what the whole executive team has been doing. Also, I’m a course representative for Pharmaceutical Chemistry and there has been lots of interest from students about upgrading their education experience through the use of technology. I noticed several lecturers have been using APPs such as Socrates and Kahoot, which help make lectures more interactive, engaging and allow students to make a contribution throughout the lesson. Therefore, I’d be pushing for greater use of this kind of technology including e-learning platforms and e-books. It’s all about accessibility and inclusivity with these APPs and there is an appetite among students for digital learning opportunities.