My name is Rachel Molloy and I was lucky enough to get a Summer Student Co-Op position at the Public Health Agency of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory.
The main objective for this position is to perform biological inventories of enteric bacterial pathogens that are considered level two pathogens. The lab I work in is accredited to ISO 17025. While performing my everyday duties I have been able to exercise and refine my skills in the areas of laboratory notebook keeping, standard operating procedures, GLP’s, MSDS’s, PSDS’s, Microsoft Office and general organization.
I am also receiving training in a variety of laboratory techniques that are used to do basic surveillance and for outbreak investigations, including molecular and genetic methods plus classical microbiology and tissue culture.
There are also many other services available at the National Microbiology Laboratory that I have taken full advantage of when I am not hard at work. There is a library on site with tons of science related literature and lots of seminars available on the science of infectious diseases (I attended one recently about the role of proteomics in HIV research).
The staff here are friendly and educated. I participate in my unit’s weekly meetings and have found the whole experience to be very welcoming.
I am grateful for those at the National Microbiology Laboratory for the wonderful experiences that I continue to have, and for Red River College for providing me the chance to have those experiences.