UCL Department of Biochemical Engineering


Rebecca Jones

  • Job title: Analyst
  • Company: Accenture
  • A-levels (or equivalent): Maths, Further Maths, Physics

How did you decide to go into biochemical engineering?

I originally applied to UCL to study Natural Sciences, because I really enjoyed studying Sciences and Math, but didn’t want to have to pick one. I then got an offer from the Physics department, but couldn’t study Natural Sciences, as I didn’t have Chemistry/Biology at A Level. So, I chose to study Theoretical Physics, but within the first year realised I wanted to study something that was more applied. Through research, I saw Biochemical Engineering - an applied subject that’s a mix of biology, chemistry, maths and even had options to take business and management modules, which I opted for. I realised it was a perfect fit and asked to be transferred.

Time at university

My favourite modules were those that were biology based. I was fascinated with how the body works and regenerative medicine. I also really liked the business and management modules. While at uni, I was a summer scholar for a regenerative medicine NGO. I love learning and carrying out research and still think I will return to education at some point in my career, but I’m enjoying the experience of working and doing something a bit different for now. I went for consulting so I could try a number of different roles.

Tell us about your job

As a consultant, it varies a lot depending on the project I’m on. At the moment, I’m on an internal project researching emerging technologies. That means I’m based in London and I spend most my day researching - these can be for internal purposes or to fulfil client requests. Everything I research is bleeding edge technology, which makes it really interesting to me, as it’s stuff that won’t have been seen on the market yet, but could be available in the near future. 

My last role was as a change analyst for a Life Sciences client that was rolling out a new app to their sales reps. This involved attending regular team meetings to get updates on the project, evaluating how this might affect the change management plan, creating content (videos, emails, graphics) for end-users to inform them of timelines and what the app could do. 

Do you have any advice for potential chemical engineering students?

If you enjoy maths and chemistry, then by studying engineering you can do almost whatever you want when you graduate. My advice would be to do as many spring weeks and work experiences as you can before you graduate. There are so many great opportunities open - try whatever you think you might be interested in and you’ll be in the best position to have whatever career you want when you graduate.