NGB visit to Hoffmann-La Roche in Basel
On the 6th February, 2020 a group of 20 students took the opportunity to join the NGB visit to Hoffmann-La Roche in Basel, organized by Lukas Jan Wyrwal of the company-visit-team.
The main building of the Roche complex perfectly reflects in its size and design the prestige and professionality that Roche has as a global key player of the pharmaceutical biotechnology field. The early wake up and the long car trip were soon forgotten after the warm welcoming breakfast.
Patricia Fischer, head manager of the visitor centre, started the session by presenting the history, the extent and the current projection of Roche. It was very interesting to learn how multinational corporations are structured, work, produce and do research on a global scale.
To gain more insights about the company itself, an interactive scale model of the Roche complex was exposed along with audio tracks and even a virtual reality portal.
Following the company presentation was Hanna Stahr, a young HR specialist, that showed the students how to apply for internship and job offers through the respective internet portal and shared her extensive knowledge and advice concerning cover letters and CVs, even correcting our student’s CVs upon request.
Besides the content of the lectures, the shared personal story and career of the speakers was much appreciated.
Before lunch, Albin Simonin, a former graduate of ESBS (promo 2009) presented the path he undertook after graduation and his current role inside Roche. Out of all lectures presented, the latter was the most relatable lecture towards the future of the biotechnology students of ESBS concerning the biopharmaceutical field. Additionally, Albin’s responsibilities included; monitoring and adjusting the production of pharmaceutical compounds, developing cell cultures in different bioreactors as well as the purification process at the end of the production chain. Furthermore, his data driven role in bioproduction allows him to enhance the efficiency of the industrial process, and to gain an overview while also dealing with changes that need to be done to the system.
At noon, lunch was served on the 32nd floor of the Roche main tower, which is considered currently the tallest building in Switzerland. With an amazing view of the beautiful city of Basel. This occasion was used by the students to connect with the experts and the trainees of Roche to discuss about the future of the company, and their career paths
The second part of the Roche visit was conducted after the lunch break and the lectures were given on the complete process of drug development; from design, production, upscaling to clinical trials and regulations concerning patent laws.
Moreover, the final lecture was given by three young and international fellows that are currently performing a post-graduate 2 years training program in Regulatory Affairs at Roche. They explained in detail the different paths they took before joining Roche, the tasks, the responsibilities, and the skills acquired on the job such as; communication, problem solving and critical thinking.
Finally, the global feedback given by the participants was very positive, therefore, in accordance with the school administration, the visit of Roche will be offered more often in the coming years.