Jawan Thapa (Statistical Programming, Amgen)
I am currently working as a Global Statistical Programmer at Amgen, a company that develops drugs. The therapeutic area which I am currently involved in is haematology/oncology and in general, I write, test and validate software programs to support the analysis of clinical data.
On a day-to-day basis, I use SAS and JSASviewer to write software programs. My job also includes reading SAP (Statistical Analysis Plan), protocols and CRF (Case Report Form) to make sure that the datasets and TFLs (Tables, Listings and Figures) I produce and check, meet the standard required by the regulatory agencies and the company itself. Time wise, my working hours are really flexible. I just have to make sure that I always meet the deadlines.
As an example, my team was asked to produce some tables for inclusion of data in a study manuscript that would be submitted for publication in a peer reviewed medical journal. As a QC (Quality Control) analyst, I did independent programming and produced one table which I compared with the one that the source programmer created to check for any discrepancies.
Why should you do a placement?
Doing a placement gives you an opportunity to see how the things that have been taught at the university correlates with a real work life. You get many opportunities to develop yourself further, expand professional connection and even gain new skills which you may not be able to do at the university. In short, I believe you get well equipped for the life after university.
Any tips on applying for a placements/ performing at interviews?
It'd be easier to fill in the application if you stay consistent to a specific area which you might find interesting rather than applying for anything anywhere. Get as much help as possible from the careers/placement centres at the university and most of all, attend the job fairs and don't hesitate to speak to the people.
At the interview, try not to be too nervous, be yourself and prepare well.