Work Experience for our Sixth Formers

Posted: 24th May 2017

It has been great to hear of the various work experience placements that our Sixth Form have been fortunate to be involved in recently.  Elizabeth G in the Lower Sixth recently took park in her ‘Toshiba Medical Systems UK’ Work Experience.

“Instead of spending my half term relaxing and reflecting on the busy term so far, I spent it at Toshiba Medical Systems UK experiencing what it would be like to work within different departments in the company. Little did I know how large the company was and how full on my week would be; it opened my eyes to the fast paced environment of the medical world.

The week I had was extremely beneficial and worthwhile which I thoroughly enjoyed and will always remember. Obtaining work experience in the medical field while still at school is challenging, and I attended Toshiba to be able to have an idea about the industry around medicine rather than the direct healthcare side. However I was lucky enough to visit a few hospitals during my week there.

On my first day, I was introduced to the company and had one-to-ones with members of staff from marketing, services and sales. These discussions gave me an insight into how the company promotes themselves, the products they provide and how they manage their engineers.

On Tuesday I spent the day with two of the ultrasound engineers and I was able to witness first-hand how ultrasound machines are set up. It opened my eyes to ultrasound technology and how it is advancing and I was able to use the probes to see my finger joints on screen. During the day there was a problem with the installation process which we were all scratching our heads about. Minutes of deliberation and some phone calls later I was able to find the correct option on the screen and complete the installation.

Wednesday was my first site visit to St Peter’s Hospital in Chertsey. A Toshiba engineer talked to me about how a CT scanner works and all the different components to the machine and the science behind how they work. I was then able to see some images that the scanner produced: a full body image, brain scan and a 3D cardiac image. I was able to get a slim insight into the images that I may (hopefully) work with in the future.

On Thursday I went to 9 Harley Street to see a CT installation taking place and here I was able to get hands-on and use a screwdriver to help assemble the cover. Engineers had joked that I could say I was part of the installation team! After assembling the cover, they had to calibrate it which wasn’t anything like calibrating the SMART boards at school. Instead, containers of water called phantoms are used to tune the performance of the CT scanner by being placed on the bed and starting the X-ray, which I was able to activate.

To conclude my week, I saw both CT and MRI scanners in situ. At Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Woolwich, the two radiographers were really informative and answered all my questions as we observed patients going through the scanners and I could see the images as they appeared on screen. Then, at St John’s and St Elizabeth’s seeing the latest Toshiba Scanner, the Aquilion One Genesis, was fascinating. The scanner’s ability to identify problems during a joint’s movement really is cutting edge technology and is going to prove to be so useful for doctors in the future with their diagnoses.

This work experience will enhance my future medical application and has sparked my interest in radiology, a career that had never crossed my mind before.
The technology that Toshiba offers and the images they produce have the potential to save lives as doctors can make more accurate diagnoses; it also improves a patient’s quality of life as they have a faster, more comfortable experience. The central focus on people and cutting-edge science makes medicine the career which I am passionate about. I am grateful I could spend a week with such an innovative company with such considerate and friendly staff.”