Pharmaceutical industry prize for student planning medical statistics career

Jessica Kirk has been awarded a student prize by Statisticians in the Pharmaceutical Industry (PSI).

Jessica Kirk

A University of Sheffield maths student has won an industry prize in recognition of the steps she has taken to pursue a career in medical statistics.

Jessica Kirk has been awarded a student prize by Statisticians in the Pharmaceutical Industry (PSI). The prizes are given to students who demonstrate an interest or active participation in medical statistics.

Jessica has studied medical statistics as part of her BSc Mathematics course and completed a project on pharmacokinetics, which led her to consider a career in medical research.

In September, she completed a placement in the University of Sheffield's Clinical Trials Research Unit, after which the unit's Professor Steven Julious nominated her for the PSI prize.

Jessica said: "I was quite surprised at first. I then felt motivated to carry on my pursuit of a career related to medical statistics."

During her degree, Jessica has also studied topics including Bayesian statistics and machine learning, and learned programming using R – skills that will help her become a medical statistician, designing and analysing clinical trials.

She said: "Before studying maths at a higher level, I had no idea how important statistics was in medical research.

"The modern applications of statistics in the pharmaceutical industry using software like R and Python are helping companies to develop and test new drugs and treatments more effectively than ever before.

"I've enjoyed modules related to this research and think it seems like a great path for maths graduates to go down."

Four students laughing while sat at a bench, outside the Students' Union

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