Biochemistry (M.Sc.)

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Dr. Sandrina Heyde, Initiation Clinical Site Manager

Please shortly describe your current profession. What does your typical day at work look like?

As an Initiation Clinical Site Manager, I am working in-house on the initiation of clinical trials. One of my main tasks is the communication with project leaders/sponsors and with centers (doctors, study coordinators) that will conduct the trial. For example: I help to resolve issues and answer questions from centers regarding the investigational medicinal product or the conduct of the trial. I collect and approve documents for submission to ethics committees, and I monitor and collect all other documents required to start a clinical trial. I am also involved in the process of contract negotiations.

What was your motivation for studying Biochemistry?

My motivation for studying Biochemistry began with my fascination for research in the field of genetic engineering with the chance to contribute to developing medical products and therapies respectively participating in basic research indispensable for the development of further therapies.

When and how did you choose your current profession? Did you realize your plans from the time of your studies?

I was interested in clinical research before, and I decided to stay in clinical research due to a postgraduate course in Clinical Trial Management at the beginning of 2019.

In your opinion, what is the most important thing for your work that you learned during your studies? What do you still profit from?

It is important for my job to develop solutions for upcoming problems on your own and to be able to work independently. A solution-focused way of working and the ability to prioritize is necessary for a good project coordination, as well as teamwork.

Which additional qualifications should one gain as a student that are crucial or useful for your current profession?

To work as an Initiation Clinical Site Manager, in addition to the biochemical studies, students should get experience in GCP (Good Clinical Practice), which is necessary if one wants to work in the area of clinical trials.

Is there anything from the Master’s program that evokes especially strong memories?

During my Master’s, I had the great possibility to participate the iGEM (international Genetically Engineered Machine) competition, which is organized by the MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology).