Biotechnology student's curiosity led to job offer
Arvey Oliveros undertook an industry project with a biopharmaceutical manufacturing company in Brisbane and was offered contract employment upon graduation.
“I am working as an upstream bioprocessor for Patheon Biologics and hope that this is the start of a future for me where I can be involved in products or activities that will improve people’s lives,” said Arvey.
Coming from the Philippines, Arvey was attracted to the UQ Master of Biotechnology degree because it integrates research and technical skills with commercialisation and regulatory knowledge, necessary for work in the biotech industry.
“The program is accredited by the US Council of Graduate Schools as a Professional Science Master’s program, which told me that UQ was one of the best institutions for biotechnology,” he said.
Attracted to research, Arvey was also curious to see biotechnology in action in industry, so applied to do an internship.
“I was privileged to have access to Patheon Biologics’ state-of-the-art equipment, utilising single-use disposable systems for the industrial-scale manufacturing of recombinant therapeutics from mammalian cells.
“Aside from the technical skills I learnt, I gained experience in performing tasks to industry-regulated standards and in accordance with the company’s quality management systems,” said Arvey.
Being part of the Patheon operations team meant meeting deadlines and executing tasks accurately – challenges Arvey enjoyed.
“One of the important things I learned was accountability,” he said.
During his studies, Arvey received UQ vacation scholarships to do research work in the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture & Food Innovation and the Centre for Advanced Imaging. He received a Dean’s Commendation Award for academic excellence in 2014.
Arvey worked part-time as a laboratory demonstrator in the School of Chemistry & Molecular Biosciences (SCMB) and as a private chemistry tutor at the student residence, King’s College.
He won a molecular design contest run by SCMB and the Molecular Biotechnology Student’s Club, and was a volunteer mentor for the club, helping other postgraduate coursework students to settle in and find research projects.
"For me, there is no better person that a new student can talk to than a person who has been in their shoes. Being able to help fellow students through this program made me feel more fulfilled and motivated me to become a good role model,” said Arvey.
Arvey praised the support and facilities available at UQ.
“Learning is an investment and we always want an exceptional return,” he said.
“Spending two years at UQ was one of the best decisions I have made, and with the exceptional support provided to me, I was able to maximise what UQ has to offer.
"Going to a university in the world's top 100 has its advantages."