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What are your interests?



Not surprisingly, some aspect of the natural sciences will run through the Naturalist's interests - from ecological awareness to nutrition and health. People with an interest in horticulture, land usage and farming (including fish) are Naturalists.

Some Naturalists focus on animals rather than plants, and may enjoy working with, training, caring for, or simply herding them. Other Naturalists will prefer working with the end result of nature's produce - the food produced from plants and animals. Naturalists like solving problems with solutions that show some sensitivity to the environmental impact of what they do. They like to see practical results and prefer action to talking and discussing.

Emmet Tobin, Validation Engineer
Engineering & Manufacturing

Emmet Tobin, Validation Engineer

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first question!

Who are the people who most influenced your career direction?

There are lots of jobs in the Life science sector, especially in Validation. These jobs often involve new and exciting projects, so I have always felt motivated.

Describe a typical day?

Validation involves qualifying equipment and processes. A typical day includes performing tests and commissioning activities followed by documenting the work. Equipment can include Thermal Ovens, cleaning equipment and packaging equipment. The paperwork then needs to be completed fully and reviewed for accuracy and completeness. Once tests are completed, reports can be issued and equipment and systems released for commercial manufacturing.

What are the main tasks and responsibilities?

  • Executing Test protocols for equipment such as packaging machines
  • Verifying installation of new equipment and machines
  • Testing new products and processes to ensure they meet design specifications (Force testing, leak testing, visual inspection)

 Skills required: Understanding automated equipment, ability to develop test protocols, Fault finding skills.

What's cool?

The opportunity to work on multi-million Euro equipment and systems to manufacture life-saving medicines.

What's not so cool?

A large amount of paperwork is completed during validation and testing of new equipment. The compiling of paperwork takes a lot of time. However, it is necessary to ensure tests and verifications are adequate and the patients safety is assured.

What subjects did you take in school and how have these influenced your career path?

I studied Engineering and Physics in school. This greatly influenced my career path. Studying engineering at this early stage gave me great confidence in selecting Engineering as a career.

What is your education to date?

BEng, Medical Engineering, University of Bradford.
NCert, Mechanical Engineering Waterford Institute of Technology.

What aspects of your education have proven most important for your job?

Learning skills that are transferrable have provided me with greater opportunities. As a Validation Engineer, you can work in many different types of companies with life sciences – Medical devices, pharmaceuticals and so on.

Does your job allow you to have a lifestyle you are happy with?

Yes, the company I work for places a lot of value on a work-life balance. My manager supports and understands our workload which makes any challenges minor.

What advice would you give to someone considering this job?

If you are interested in developing new skills throughout your career, then validation engineering in a life science company is a winner. If you have a logical way of thinking and strive to achieve quality in your work, you would enjoy this job. 



What kinds of work experience would provide a good background for this position?

Any engineering work experience would be of benefit. I worked as a factory operative during the summer months when in College. Office experience in a multinational company (e.g. Quality Department) would also be helpful.

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