For those who love science and storytelling — consider medical writing
Mar 16, 2020
In NetworkPharma’s latest career guide for wannabe medical writers, Kat Schleicher discusses how her love of science and storytelling makes medical writing the perfect career choice for her:
I love science! There is something beautiful in strategically designing experiments with clearly defined outcomes to test a new hypothesis. It’s exhilarating to look down a microscope and actually see cells dividing, or a cardiomyocyte beating. It’s like watching a narrative unfurl before your eyes. During my time as a postdoc at the University of Oxford, I realised this was really what I enjoyed the most: finding the scientific story and then telling it in a compelling and accessible manner. I knew that I wanted to move away from the bench, and when I first learned about medical communications during a networking event at Oxford, I was intrigued.
Two years into my postdoc, I hung up the lab coat, moved to London and joined the Lucid Futures graduate programme, a competitive one-year training programme that combines new-to-industry coaching sessions with on-the-job training. I joined knowing I would get to do more of what I love – co-developing scientifically sound narratives around clinical data – while working within a team who share the ultimate vision of creating resources that lead to better outcomes for patients with life-limiting diseases. What I did not know was that giving up a well-known career path, and the knowledge and credibility that I had worked so hard for as a scientist, would give way to opportunities for career development and skills acquisition in both writing and project management that I wasn’t even aware existed.
At Lucid, we believe that good things will come from taking the road less travelled and stepping outside of your comfort zone. My experience as a scientist was not wasted here. In fact, it was taken to the next level. I discovered my appreciation for outcomes-driven projects and my love of working as part of a high-performing team. My ability to quickly understand new scientific content and comfortably present it to diverse audiences was an asset which propelled me to progress from Graduate to Associate Medical Writer and then Medical Writer within two years of joining the company. And I was learning new things every step of the way:
- How does a company work?
- How do you make sure a project is delivered on time and to budget?
- What kind of data should be communicated at each step of a medicine’s life cycle?
- What information are different stakeholders in the healthcare system going to be most interested in?
- How can you best add value to your clients, to healthcare professionals, and to patients?
If you find these questions as interesting as I did, enjoy writing and science, and want to make a difference to patients’ lives, medical writing is a great place to start your MedComms career.
You can download a full copy of the Medcomms Networking careers guide From academic to medical writer here
If, like Kat, you also love science and want to be part of something magical, please get in touch.
Contact Dan Newbury, Talent Acquisition Manager
Tel: 07584 575260