Pharma R&D Today
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How Our Work Affects Young People – and Vice Versa
Posted on March 29th, 2017 by Claudia A. McDonald Bøen, Ph.D. in Pharma R&D
Our biochemistry project leader, Steffi Lundvall, recently gave a lecture at Ullern videregående skole, the local high school, located on the floor below our research facilities. This was part of a special one-week program at the high school during which the students could choose to focus on different study branches, learning exciting new things in science or doing, for example, study trips to expand their foreign language skills.
Steffi provided a research-oriented talk about recombinant protein production and protein purification to the students. She introduced different purification methods and how they are applied in the ongoing research at Arctic Pharma. Furthermore, she gave a hands-on demonstration of the first purification step that we apply to obtain pure proteins for our enzymatic studies. We hope teaching opportunities like this will help interest future generations in scientific research.
Meanwhile, Steffi is also very directly contributing to the next generation, as she has a baby on the way and so she will be going on parental leave soon. Welcoming a new child is an exciting experience, and being able to spend time with your baby during their early months is very special and provides a bonding time for parents and children. I understand this personally as I am also a new mother (my daughter was born almost two years ago.)
We are happy that Steffi, as well as our medicinal chemistry project leader Bora Sieng, will have the opportunity to go on their maternity and paternity leave—or, as we say in Norway, mammaperm and pappaperm. Steffi will be taking her maternity leave for almost a year starting next month, while Bora has already been on leave since February and will continue to be on leave until July. Naturally it is difficult to have valued team members leave for a long period of time. In Norway, the way this is dealt with is by the government paying the salary of the employee taking the leave, thus freeing up funds to hire new temporary employees.
As a result, we have expanded our team to take in new scientists to replace those who will be on leave. While these kinds of disruptions do slow down the team a little as newcomers get up to speed, being able to hire new employees is a great way to keep the scientific progress moving forward. We’ll talk more about our new team members in our next blog post.
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Claudia A. McDonald Bøen, Ph.D.
CEO at Arctic Pharma
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