Senior R&D Scientist at Randox Teoranta in Dungloe, Dr Sarah Gildea, on her PhD in Equine Influenza Virus and what she loves the most about being home
Since the opening of Randox Teoranta back in 2010, our team of scientists, engineers and software developers has grown significantly.
Career opportunities at our state-of-the-art research, development and manufacturing centre is utilising the talented skill set of Donegal people and newcomers alike, while actively attracing the Donegal Diaspora back to the area.
Donegal graduates who are working away from home have the opportunity to return, or for those from further afield, they have the opportunity to experience the distinct Donegal lifestyle for the first time.
Senior R&D Scientist at Randox Teoranta in Dungloe, Dr Sarah Gildea, returned to her native Donegal to work in Randox Teoranta, after having worked in the Irish Equine Centre in Kildare. She chatted to us about her PhD in Equine Influenza Virus and what she loves the most about being home.
Hi Sarah, can you tell us a little bit about your background and where you started your career?
I’m originally from Ardara which is in the south west of Donegal and about half an hour away from Dungloe where Randox Teoranta is based. Once I graduated from the University of Limerick with a Bsc in Equine Science, I got a job in the Virology Unit of The Irish Equine Centre, which is in Kildare. I stayed there for 13 years and during that time I got the opportunity to complete my PhD in Equine Influenza Virus.
Why did you choose Randox Teoranta?
After travelling to Kildare each week I finally got the opportunity to return home to work last June when I was lucky enough to join the Randox Teoranta team here in Dungloe. Travelling to Kildare was beginning to take its toll on me – I wasn’t home until late Friday evening and then I was away again on Sunday so it was always a short trip home. Don’t get me wrong now, it’s great to travel and see different parts of the world that you wouldn’t get the opportunity to see otherwise, but being a bit of a home bird I had wanted to come home for a while. I never thought that I would get the opportunity to work at home in the field of science, especially veterinary science. So as you can imagine I was delighted when I heard that Randox was opening a new R&D site in Dungloe and was expanding their expertise to include a veterinary division. I thought it was such a rare opportunity to be given the chance to work in my area of expertise so close to where I grew up.
What’s the difference in terms of the facilities between Randox Teoranta and the Irish Equine Centre?
Coming from the Irish Equine Centre where I was involved in diagnosing diseases for race horse trainers and veteran surgeons from all around Ireland to Randox Teoranta where I am developing tests to supply the likes of Irish Equine Centre and like-minded companies had its advantages. I already had a broad knowledge of vet diagnostics and diseases but now instead of diagnosing diseases I am creating the innovative diagnostic tests that the Irish Equine Centre would use. It meant that I already had a good knowledge on the flaws of some of the current tests and my experience gave me a good insight for what’s important when developing new innovative diagnostic tests.
How important is it that companies like Randox invest in places like Dungloe?
By investing in science and engineering at Randox Teoranta I have not only been able to bring back my knowledge and experience to my home county, but also teach and educate those in the community who are interested in pursuing a career in science but don’t necessarily want to travel far from home. Randox Teoranta not only allows me to give back to the community but also make huge savings on travel expenses as I no longer have to commute long distances to work each day. But really the most important thing for me is being close to all my family and friends.
For more information about our Randox Teoranta Open Morning on Friday 23rd December please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Make sure to share on your social media platforms using the hashtag #TalentedTeoranta!
The Wild Atlantic Adventure Race (WAAR), sponsored by Randox Teoranta, took place on Saturday 15th May this year, in the Rosses, West Donegal.
The WAAR route took over 400 participants on a 7.5k run across road and grasslands, including a run alongside two dramatic beaches at Carrickfin and Mullaghderg. The athletes had the chance to breathe in some of the Wild Atlantic air as they finished the run and got ready to cycle.
The next stage of the race was a 42.5k cycle along the Atlantic Coastline before climbing gently into the famous Hills of Donegal outside of Dungloe, where our Randox Teoranta site is located.
Finally the participants ended the race with a 1k Kayak challenge on the well-known waters of Mullaghdearg lake before running a couple of hundred metres down the large GAA pitch to the finish line.
Ciaran Richardson, Head of R&D at Randox Teoranta in Dungloe, commented;
“We are delighted to have partnered with the WAAR event, in our ongoing work to promote positive physical and mental health in the wider Donegal community. The race was an outstanding success, and we even had our own Randox Teoranta employees taking part – Michele Green, Eoghan O’Colla, Hugh Martin, Robert Farrell, Chris McNally, who recently won 1st place in the Randox Student Placement Awards Science Category, and Noel Diver, who came a very impressive 4th overall in WAAR, out of more than 400 participants! The feedback from our Randox team was fantastic – they highlighted the tight organisation of the event, the support offered throughout the challenge, and the beautiful Donegal scenery which they were able to take in along the way. On behalf of everyone here at Randox Teoranta, I would like to say a massive congratulations to all WAAR participants – what a fantastic achievement!”
The first WAARior to cross the finish line in this year’s WAAR event, was Sean McFadden with a very impressive time of 2:17:54, quickly followed by Martin Lynch and Neil McBride.
A full list of results can be found here.
Randox are proud to announce that Randox Teoranta have once again agreed to be the major sponsor for WAAR 2016, which was launched, on Saturday 20th February.
The Wild Atlantic Adventure Race is a 7.5K Run, 42.5K Cycle, 2K Hike & 1K Kayak which starts and finishes in The Banks, Mullaghdearg, Donegal,Ireland on the 14th of May – as a fundraiser for the Naomh Muire GAA club.
Details of the 2016 Wild Atlantic Adventure Race were revealed in the new Health and Wellbeing room at the CLG Naomh Muire GAA Club, in Mullaghdearg, County Donegal, and the event was launched by Nikki Bradley, a public speaker who draws on her life experience to help people untap their potential.
Nikki was diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer at sixteen and the receiver of a second hip replacement at the age of twenty six, she has been on a truly unique journey. So unique in fact, her consultant once told her that she is currently one of less than ten people worldwide to have lived through what she has.
Not only did Nikki come and launch the event but she will compete in the Hike part of WAAR with a team. Nikki’s most recent challenge was to climb Errigal on crutches and she has featured on UTV, TV3, and IrelandAM, and also in national newspapers.
Ciaran Richardson, Head of R&D at Randox Teoranta in Dungloe, commented;
“We are delighted to partner with WAAR in our ongoing work to promote positive physical and mental health in the great Donegal community. The launch for the race was a great success, and we all particularly enjoyed hearing from Nikki on the day – sharing her story of courage, hope and strength in the face of fear. We are all eagerly looking forward to the race in May and encourage you all to get involved. If Nikki can do it, so can we!”
Global biotechnology firm Randox, is announcing that recruitment for the expansion of its facility in Dungloe is now underway. In October the company laid out its vision for Randox Teoranta, its cutting-edge life science and engineering centre, which included a major investment of €25m in the site and a jobs boost of almost 500 posts to be filled by 2020.
The first wave of recruitment for #Dungloe2020 has just begun, with the initial focus on electrical, mechanical and software engineers as Dr Peter FitzGerald, Randox MD explains:
“We are very pleased that the recruitment process is now open for the first of the #Dungloe2020 positions. At the moment, we are keen to hear from those in life sciences, medical device engineering and software; with a particular focus on Software developers and testers, embedded software engineers, those with backgrounds in mechanical design as well as electronic & electrical engineers.
Randox Teoranta is a next generation life-sciences and engineering research and manufacturing centre, the site of pioneering research into conditions impacting human health such as alzheimer’s and diseases of the kidneys and liver. We hope to encourage scientists and engineers returning for Christmas, to consider returning for good to pursue world class careers at home.”
Stiofán Ó Cualáin, CEO, Údarás na Gaeltachta, says they are backing the campaign:
“We are delighted to hear that Randox Teoranta is now commencing its recruitment campaign following the company’s recent announcement of its expansion plans at its facility in An Clochán Liath. Údarás na Gaeltachta, are pleased to be able support Randox Teo. in this recruitment drive. The people that will be employed in these new jobs will play an important role in the growth and continued development of Randox Teoranta. and we wish the company every success with their campaign.”
Randox Teoranta is holding a ‘drop-in’ morning, Wednesday 24th December during the hours of 0900-1200 for anyone interested in the career opportunities available. Representatives from the company will be happy to discuss the #Dungloe2020 expansion and recruitment.
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