To celebrate ‘International Woman’s Day’ on the 8th of March, we continue our series of ‘Inspiring Women in Science’ interviewing our very own Rebecca Randall.

Celebrating women in Science and STEM has always been passion at Radleys. Are we starting to see the effects? It was only last year a Barbie doll was created celebrating vaccinologist Dame Sarah Gilbert’s achievements for the COVID vaccine at AstraZeneca. Let’s hope the industry keeps up this positive change.

Rebecca Randall joined Radleys in 2021, having completed a BSc in Pharmaceutical Science and has been a great addition to the team. Here’s what Rebecca had to say about her experiences of being a woman in science.

I am a big believer of doing a job that makes you happy and pushes you. Science does exactly this for me.Rebecca Randall, Technical Support Specialist, Radleys

1.Tell us a little about your role at Radleys

I work in technical support; creating custom quotations and providing support to end users and distributors with pre and post sales questions. I advise on custom made equipment and glassware to best suit a customer’s application needs, as well as being available for any questions they may have. I also help check some of our more complex system before dispatch and occasionally help in R&D. I am acutely aware of the high expectation’s scientists have for their equipment and I enjoy working for a company that supplies such innovative equipment. I feel lucky for this to be my first job after finishing my degree.


2. Did you always know you wanted a career in science?

Yes, I am a big believer of doing a job that makes you happy and pushes you. Science does exactly this for me. When I’m really interested in something it doesn’t feel like a chore to learn. I focused on science-based subjects for my GCSEs, and Biology, Psychology and Geography for my A’Levels. These subjects enabled me to go on to my degree. I especially loved the practical lab sessions in science, they were definitely a contributing factor to my degree choice.

Rebecca Randall using Reactor-Ready

3. Where did you study?

I studied Pharmaceutical Science at Anglia Ruskin University. In my last year, my dissertation focused on the antimicrobial effects of a metabolite of the drug disulfiram when chelated with a metal ion. At university, I also helped teach practical labs to the first-year students. I loved answering their questions and assisting with equipment they hadn’t used before.

4. How do you feel the landscape will change for women in science?

I think the landscape for women in science is changing for the positive. For me personally, in my Pharmaceutical Science degree, we had a larger woman to men ratio. Also, in 2020, two women won the chemistry Nobel Prize for their work on the gene editing system CRISPR. This was great to see, however I still feel we have a long way to go. But in 2021 only men won Nobel Prizes in any science discipline, therefore I’m looking forward to the year when it’s equal men to woman winning Nobel Prizes.

5. What advice would you give to young people who are considering a career in science?

My advice is: don’t give up! You can face challenges, especially in research, but the key is to keep on pushing. My sister is currently completing her dissertation in Marine Science, and she comes home quite frustrated sometimes, but I remind her that research takes time and try to keep her motivated.

Rebecca Randall working

6. What inspires you in the workplace?

Personally, I love learning new things, and in a job where no two days are the same, I’m constantly learning new things. My job at Radleys definitely keeps me on my toes.

7. Are there any obstacles you’ve personally encountered as a woman in science?

I’m lucky that I haven’t encountered any problems as a woman in science and that gender has never been an issue, either at University or in the workplace. I am optimistic it will stay that way throughout my career in science.