We Are Randox | Randox Higher Level Apprentice Sarah Casey is awarded second place in NI WorldSkills Regional Final
A huge congratulations is in order for Science Higher Level Apprentice Sarah Casey who battled it out at the NI WorldSkills Regional Heat on 4th June to be awarded a well-deserved second place.
This was the first WorldSkills NI Regional Heat for Laboratory Technicians and was hosted at Southern Regional College, the Life Sciences Hub for Further Education in Northern Ireland.
The laboratory technician competition is based on real life scenarios in science that demonstrate technical competence in the use of complex instrumentation, laboratory equipment and skills. The competition is designed to reflect the work of a laboratory technician and tests their skills in techniques and procedures to solve practical problems through analysis, tests and measurements while ensuring safe and ethical working practices.
“This regional heat was a fantastic opportunity for higher education students across the sector to showcase their technical and analytical abilities. The competitors have performed exceptionally well under such challenging conditions” said Dr. Asha Jamil, Life Sciences Hub Development Manager at Southern Regional College.
She continued; “Judges have come from a variety of specialist scientific backgrounds from both education and industry across the UK and I am delighted that competitors from NI had this opportunity to demonstrate their range of skills on such a prestigious platform. Judges also commented that they were highly impressed by all the competitors’ technical and analytical skills and their professional approach to this challenging competition.”
Judges were representatives from Middlesex University, Norbrook Laboratories, and also included the current Team UK Laboratory Technician winner, Tonicha Roberts, who is a Forensic Reporting Scientist with Eurofins Forensic Services, UK.
Competitors came from a range of higher education programmes from across the NI sector including Foundation Degrees and Higher Level Apprenticeship (HLA) programmes. The HLA students study their underpinning Ulster University Foundation Degrees at Southern Regional College (Newry and Portadown campuses) and are employed with Norbrook Laboratories, Randox and Almac.
Sarah Casey, who was awarded second place, is currently a Southern Regional College student completing the Higher Level Apprenticeship in Applied Industrial Sciences (Life Sciences Pathway) in the Randox Science Park in Antrim. Sarah also won Southern Regional College’s Science Competition in January 2019.
The top performing competitors across the UK will now have a nail-biting wait to see if they have scored high enough to qualify for the WorldSkills UK Final at Birmingham’s NEC in November. We wish Sarah the best of luck!
Randox is a placement-friendly business and we’re proud to be a top employer when it comes to students searching for their perfect placement opportunity before final year. Ulster University Business Studies student Lauren Todd joined the Randox sales team in September 2017 as a placement student, finishing with us in June 2018.
We were delighted to attend a ceremony at Ulster University’s Jordanstown campus last week where Lauren was shortlisted for a UU Placement Award. We caught up with her after the ceremony;
Lauren, congratulations on your award! Can you tell us about your university and career path to date?
During my first two years of university, I worked in retail as a cash office supervisor before leaving in the summer of 2017 to start into my placement year at Randox. I am now in my final year at UUJ and working as a private tutor to A-Level Business Studies students.
Why Randox and how did you find your placement year?
Randox is a globally recognised company with a very close links with Ulster University, and I wanted to complete my placement year with a company that would help me develop my skills outside of the classroom. I thoroughly enjoyed my placement year at Randox and it has allowed me to improve my ‘soft’ skills such as communication, teamwork and problem solving.
What was a typical day like for you at Randox?
A typical day at Randox consisted of daily communication with the global sales team, continual analysis of CRM data and the teams sales figures, compiling reports and providing feedback to the team.
How are you finding being back in university for final year?
Final year has been tough, but it’s scary that we only have six weeks left! My placement year at Randox has enabled me to become a more confident individual, and this has helped with final year projects such as group tasks and class presentations.
What was the award that you were presented with today and how are you feeling about it?
I was commended in the Excellence in Employability Awards from the Ulster University Business School. I am proud to have been shortlisted for this award as Randox have allowed me to develop my skills and helped me to work to my full potential. It feels amazing to gain this recognition from Ulster and that my contribution to the company has been beneficial.
What are your plans for after you leave university?
After graduation, I am looking forward to a few weeks off – and a much-needed two week holiday to Portugal – before starting into a full time graduate job.
To find out more about placement opportunities with Randox, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are many different science roles at Randox which require many different skillsets – and there are as many different pathways to get to them! One such pathway is the Higher Level Apprenticeship offered by Randox in collaboration with Northern and Southern Regional Colleges.
Sarah Casey is both a Randox Higher Level Apprentice and a student at Portadown Southern Regional College. We caught up with her fresh from her win at the Southern Regional College Science Competition in January 2019.
Sarah, congratulations on winning the science award at Southern Regional College!
Please tell us more about the Science Competition you took part in – and won – at Southern Regional College.
The competition was held at the SRC Newry Campus and consisted of two experiments. I competed against other students from Randox, Almac and Norbrook.
For the first experiment, I had to find the concentration of an unknown sample of copper sulphate. I carried out a serial dilution using a known concentration of copper sulphate and then found the absorbance of each of the standards. I then found the absorbance for the unknown sample as well. From this I was able to plot a graph and determine the concentration of the unknown sample.
For the second experiment, I had to carry out a titration of iodine against sodium thiosulphate. I added the sodium thiosulphate to the iodine solution until the solution appeared pale yellow. I added a few drops of the starch indicator and continued titrating until the solution appeared colourless. I recorded the titre and then repeated the titration two more times to find an average titre. I then had to complete several questions relating to this experiment.
What did you study before you applied for the Higher Level Apprenticeship?
I previously studied A-Levels at St. Joseph’s Grammar school, undertaking Biology, Chemistry and Digital Technology. I always had a keen interest in science when I was younger so after studying Biology and Chemistry for A-Level I knew that I wanted to pursue a career in this field. In school I enjoyed the practical aspect of subjects which lead me to want to take part in this Higher Level Apprenticeship.
Where are you currently studying and what do you like most about your course?
I am studying the Life Science pathway of Applied Industrial Science at Portadown Southern Regional College. This course is based on biology and I have just finished semester one. I enjoy learning about buffer solutions, oxidation and redox reaction. For semester two, I look forward to studying physiology and continue to gain more knowledge about biology.
How did you hear about Higher Level Apprenticeships at Randox?
I heard about the higher level apprenticeship from my Careers teacher at school. He highly recommended that we tried out for the apprenticeship. After I applied after carrying out some research online. I was then offered a place here at Randox and started in September 2018.
Could you give a brief description of a typical day at Randox for you?
At the moment, I am based in the QC Serum department carrying out value assignments for Randox products. On a typical day I will come into work and carry out the daily maintenance on the RX Daytona and Imola. I will then have a look through the assignment folder to check what lots need to be assigned a value. I will gather the calibrator, controls and test lots in order to reconstitute them. While they are rolling, I will collect the necessary reagents. The test is then carried out. Afterwards I will type up the results into a spreadsheet to check if the lots have passed. I can carry out nest tests, two-day assignments and calibrator validations for chemistrys, lipids and cardiac. In between runs, I check sheets that are sent to customers.
What qualifications will you have when your Higher Level Apprenticeship at Randox ends?
I will finish my apprenticeship in September 2020. Since joining Randox only a few months ago I have already gained so many invaluable skills. By the end of this apprenticeship I hope to be competent with most or all the analysers used at Randox while continuing to exhibit good laboratory practice. At the end of the apprenticeship I will gained a foundation degree in Applied Industrial Sciences. I can then progress onto year two of Biomedical Science at Ulster University.
Would you recommend a Higher Level Apprenticeship at Randox to someone else and why?
I would highly recommend the higher level apprenticeship. It is a great experience and provides all the necessary skills required to pursue a career in this industry. Also, it allows you to earn while you learn so it’s a win-win situation as a student!
For more information about Sarah’s story or to hear more about the Higher Level Apprenticeship at Randox, please contact RandoxPR@randox.com.
On Saturday 10th November 2018, Randox Ladies GAA team took to the field at the Tyrone GAA Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, to compete in the FinTrU Ulster GAA Football Inter-Firms competition.
Catering for all levels of skills and fitness, the Inter-Firms competition is a tournament open specifically to workplaces across Ulster, in which teams can represent their workplace in Gaelic games.
On the day of the tournament, the Randox Ladies were placed in a group alongside Premier Electric, Options IT and FinTrU, and the first 7-a-side group match saw the ladies up against Premier Electric, who from the start proved to be very tough and experienced opponents.
Team Randox met the challenge head on however, and were leading the game from start to finish until a second goal against the run of play narrowly denied the Randox Ladies the win in the last minute of the game.
For their second match of the tournament, the Randox Ladies showed great character and hunger to bounce back and defeat Options IT 2-6 to no score, in what was an outstanding performance. This victory was not without cost though, as the ladies were forced to battle on in spite of a few injuries.
The final group game against financial services company FinTrU proved to be the toughest match for the Randox Ladies. Having played two games back to back, with numerous injuries gained along the way, the game was always going to be a difficult one, but once again the ladies showed a fantastic attitude, battling hard in all areas.
With their exceptional performance in the group stage, the Randox Ladies found themselves in the semi-final of the cup competition against last year’s winners South West College. From the first whistle, the ladies put everything on the line, running themselves into the ground despite injury and fatigue.
SWC picked up a few early points and then scored two goals against the run of play which would have finished off any experienced team, but with minutes remaining Randox admirably battled up the field to score two goals of their own to bring the game to within a score. In the end though the SWC ladies survived to hang on for a narrow win and went head-to-head in the final against eventual tournament winners FinTrU.
Randox Ladies emerged from their GAA début in an impressive third place.
John James Fallon, Randox Electrical Engineer and Bainisteoir / Coach for Randox Ladies GAA Team, commented;
“What the Randox Ladies have done in such a short time is a fantastic achievement. Most have never played Gaelic football before so for them to go out and to be able to keep up with the pace of very experienced players is nothing short of amazing. They should be extremely proud of themselves and with the men’s competition this Saturday the bar has been set extremely high indeed. Well done team!”
The 2018 FinTrU Ulster GAA Football Inter-Firms Junior Men’s Competition will take place on Saturday 17th November at the Tyrone GAA Centre of Excellence. We wish our Men’s team all the best!
Left to Right: Christine Maybin, Ciara Shaw, Ashleigh McKinstry, Maria McLaughlin, Rachel Walls, Rebecca Molloy, Maeve McAllister, Rachel McCloy, Amy Best
(Team members missing from photo; Claire Donnelly and Jeanette Doherty)
At Randox we know the importance of celebrating our staff, and encouraging camaraderie between colleagues.
That’s why we host a staff fun day every year during the summer – as an opportunity for Randox staff located across different sites and departments to get to know each other, to enjoy the sunshine together, and of course to raise some funds for a worthy cause.
With all proceeds going towards Meningitis Research NI , this year staff gathered together for a day of games, baking, team building and of course general merriment on Friday 11th August 2017.
The activities on offer were:
- Tug of war
- Bucking bronco
- Bake Off competition
- And of course a tasty BBQ!
To add the final icing on the cake, winners of the Randox Fest 2017 Rounders Tournament each won tickets to the Randox Health Grand National 2018. Congratulations Amy Johnston, Brandon Campbell, Rebecca Keenan, Renu Datta, Mary Henry and Emmet Mulholland!
And of course a big congratulations to Amy Best, whose delicious Cookie Cake won the Randox Fest Bake Off 2017. Amy will now be a judge for the Bake Off at our 2018 event!
We hope everyone had an enjoyable afternoon at Randox Fest and have forged some wonderful new friendships across our 1400-strong workforce.
Thank you to all who took part, and we look forward to having you join us for next year’s event!
To find out more about charity fundraising at Randox, please email email@example.com
In advance of the highly anticipated Randox Health Grand National 2017, the race’s new sponsor is launching a nation-wide campaign to encourage people to take control of their health and wellbeing, with the help of legendary jockey AP McCoy.
Global healthcare company Randox Health is offering one lucky winner the chance to join AP on its elite team of brand ambassadors, which also includes Olympic Sailor Matt McGovern. The winner of the competition will receive the world’s most advanced personalised health check – the Randox Health Signature Programme, as well as tickets to the Randox Health Grand National 2018, and an iPad Pro.
Via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, entrants have to submit a photograph and accompanying text to tell the world’s greatest jockey why they want to #FeelLikeAP and enjoy a healthier future.
AP McCoy has encouraged others to start thinking about their health and commented;
“I’m delighted to be involved with such a positive campaign, asking people to think about their health and why it is so important to them, and to take preventive action to secure it. The information I got from my Randox Health check showed I was on the path to getting diabetes and needed to address low calcium levels and malnutrition among other things which could – if left untreated – have been big problems. But I can take action now to prevent this.
“Some people may be inclined to wait until you feel ill before going to the doctor but it’s better to do what you can to prevent it from happening, if you can.”
Dr. Peter FitzGerald, Founder and Managing Director of Randox Health, launched the new health campaign by saying;
“AP McCoy has a special place in the hearts of millions of people across the world – those who shared his passion and were inspired by his commitment and drive. By spreading the Randox message of preventive health, he is giving back to those supporters by giving them the tools to live not just a long life but a healthy one too.
“Right across society, too many people suffer from preventable illnesses, and almost a quarter of all deaths under 75 in the UK are avoidable. The solution is to reduce the risk of becoming ill and we achieve that through preventive health. It’s no longer enough sto say you’re healthy today. The diagnostics exist and are being used in our Randox Health clinics to tell you how to be healthy in the future as well.
“This is not just a competition we are launching with AP, but a nationwide campaign which I hope will create a sea-change in how we view our health.”
To enter the #FeelLikeAP competition and be in with a chance to join AP as a Randox Health brand ambassador, win a Randox Health Signature Programme, 2 tickets to the Randox Health Grand National 2017, and an iPad Pro, you must:
- follow Randox Health on either Facebook, Instagram or Twitter
- upload a photo
- tell AP and Randox Health why your future health matters to you. Don’t forget to include the hashtag #FeelLikeAP.
More information about the #FeelLikeAP competition visit http://www.randox.com/feel-like-ap-mccoy/
For more information about Randox Health please contact Nicola McHugh or Amy McIlwaine in the Randox PR team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 028 9442 2413