My name is Ciaran Richardson and I’m the Research and Development Manager at Randox Teoranta in Dungloe. My job is primarily focused on working closely with the R&D scientists at the facility who use unique Randox technologies to develop next-generation life-extending diagnostic tests for prevalent human diseases such as stroke, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, chronic kidney disease, gastrointestinal disorders and thyroid disease. However, we don’t just focus on human conditions as we are also developing a variety of veterinary diagnostic tests too! At Randox Teoranta we are constantly evaluating new technologies and methodologies with a view to continuously evolving how we approach our work.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My drive to work takes me through the most fantastic scenery – I feel privileged that I have been provided with an opportunity to return home to West Donegal to take up such a challenging and exciting position in the field of science just 20 minutes from my doorstep in Gweedore.
I manage a broad spectrum of R&D projects so my days are very varied. I could be meeting with our different scientific teams or managing ongoing projects we have with various collaborators throughout the world. R&D is a rewarding and challenging eld and it is very important that we optimise each stage of the process to ensure the most effective diagnostic outcome. I therefore spend most of my time engaging with our scientists and international collaborators, reviewing the progress of projects and providing strategic direction to move our programmes forward as efficiently as possible.
Working at Randox Teoranta allows me to spend more time with my family as I have such a short commute and I haven’t had to re-settle my family from our native Donegal for me to follow my dream career. We have four children and a dog so you can imagine how busy things can be!.
When I get home in the evening I enjoy spending time with my wife and children. I tend to work hard during the week and then view the weekend as family time.
A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A SCIENTIST AT RANDOX TEORANTA
Did you always want to be a scientist?
The short answer is no. My mother was a teacher and my father a businessman. My mother felt that I didn’t have the patience to be a teacher – I must admit she was probably right! My passion for science came to the fore when I studied biology, chemistry and mathematics at Pobalscoil Chloich Cheannfhaola in Falcarragh. I went on to study Biotechnology at the National University of Ireland, Galway, and then undertook my PhD studies in cancer research at the University of Wales College of Medicine in Cardiff. I then spent the next five and a half years working at the MRC Protein Phosphorylation Unit at the University of Dundee.
When our first daughter was born in Dundee we decided we wanted to move back to Donegal but my job prospects as a scientist were limited. I did, however, apply for a role in Randox’s County Antrim headquarters which I was delighted to accept. 18 months later, I was asked to become the R&D manager at a brand new Randox site in West Donegal. The rest, as they say, is history. Science can be a challenging career but it is extremely rewarding to think that the work we do at Randox Teoranta has global impact, with the potential to not only improve speed and accuracy of diagnoses worldwide, but, ultimately, to extend people’s lives beyond expectancy.
Can I find my dream career at Randox Teoranta?
We are expanding our workforce which means there are plenty of opportunities at Randox Teoranta! From placement student roles to permanent positions, we are currently seeking the right candidates in various different fields – from manufacturing to research and development, and from mechanical, electrical, electronic design and embedded systems engineers to software developers and a variety of administrative roles.
At Randox Teoranta we’re involved in world-leading science and technology every day while working with top-class people. It’s amazing to think that your dream role in global innovation, making a real difference to people’s lives, could be right on the doorstep in beautiful Donegal!