UTS Science offers new internship program to international students
From left to right - Nadine Krayem, Susan Luong, David Andersen, Linus Ng, Shimpei Watanabe, Dr Unnikrishnan Kuzhiumparambil, Dr Shanlin Fu.
A new research internship program has been launched by UTS Science to attract prospective international students from a number of Singaporean Polytechnic institutions, who have an interest in pursuing a UTS Bachelor’s degree in any of the science disciplines.
Associate Dean of International and External Engagement, Professor Graham Nicholson explains, “The idea behind this new program is to expose international diploma students to UTS Science courses and academics making the transition to UTS easier for them if they choose to further their tertiary studies at a later date.”
UTS Science has commenced offering full-time ‘internship’ research projects to students at the following Singaporean institutions; Temasek Polytechnic, Nanyang Polytechnic, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Singapore Polytechnic and Republic Polytechnic.
The first student to undertake this newly created internship program, Linus Ng from Temasek Polytechnic, came to UTS in September 2013 to work on a metabolic study of synthetic cannabinoids with UTS Dr Shanlin Fu.
Partnered with UTS PhD student Shimpei Watanabe and supervised by Dr Shanlin Fu, Linus helped set up and assisted with different experiments to measure and identify the different compounds in a variety of synthetic cannabinoids.
Linus Ng said, “I’m studying a Diploma in Pharmaceutical Science in Singapore. The main reason I wanted to do this internship was to expand my practical skills and learn more about research. The pharmaceutical and research sectors in Singapore are still quite new and spending three months doing a research project in a place like Sydney, with more developed research institutions has allow me to learn more in my study area as well as a new cultural experience.”
“My UTS internship project looked at a metabolic study of different compounds in synthetic cannabinoids and by assessing their pharmacology and toxicology properties we were trying to better understand the effects of synthetic drugs. My favourite subject is basic pharmacology and how drugs affect the body so this project fit perfectly with my diploma studies and interests,” he said.
“I really enjoyed the research aspect of the program as it allowed me to think on my own and improvise without my supervisor spoon feeding me all the information.”
“The highlight for me was using all the technical and analytical instrumentation in the labs. It was interesting to learn and understand how different equipment worked to produce data and analytical results of all the experiments we had set.”
Dr Fu said, “This was a unique opportunity for Linus Ng. With a basic background in pharmaceutical science, having him assist with some of our research in forensic chemistry has given him exposure and experience in another field that he may not have considered before.”
Associate Dean of International and External Engagement, Professor Graham Nicholson said “This research internship is the first of its kind for us at UTS Science. We are expecting more students to take up this program in the near future, with two students coming from Singapore Polytechnic in January 2014 and another five students coming over from Nanyang Polytechnic in May 2014.”