What is Pharmaceutical Biotechnology?
Many modern medicines such as vaccines, hormones, anticancer drugs are now made using biological cells. Insulin for example, which is used by diabetic patients worldwide is made using living cells as opposed to more traditional chemical synthesis based methods.
This means there is a strong demand for biologists who can design innovative new medicines using biological approaches, and who have the skills to work with cells and the bio-active compounds they produce. This biotechnology course will teach students how to grow and engineer biological cells in order to make safe and effective medicines using the most up-to-date information and technologies available.
About the Course
The course content is specifically designed to meet the needs of the many relevant employers both nationally and internationally, and contains topical, cutting edge, industry specific material. The lectures are supplemented with in-depth analysis of relevant case studies, projects, assignments, interactive videos, web tools and site visits. A substantial portion of the contact time in the first three years is spent in the laboratory gaining practical experience.
Many of the world’s top Biotechnology companies have a strong presence in Ireland. In general, the industry is moving towards a more “bio-based” approach to pharmaceutical manufacture. Consequently, there is a greater need to produce highly trained graduates who possess Pharmaceutical Biotechnology related skills. This course is designed to specifically meet this need.
Work Placement is a mandatory part of this course. In Year 3, students will spend a minimum of 16 weeks in a local, national or internationally approved work environment. With a substantial database of national and international indusrty partners at our disposal, students have an opportunity to experience the reality of a work-based environment as part of their education, gaining access to some of the leading scientific companies in the world.
This course is an excellent platform for further studies, both in terms of short add-on courses, and more structured postgraduate degrees such as Master of Science and PhD programmes.
Does this course qualify me as a Pharmacist?
No. It trains you to work in the biotechnology industry where modern bio-medicines are discovered and made such as vaccines, hormones, antibodies, and therapeutic enzymes.
What personal skills are most suited to the course and subsequent careers?
Good organisational skills, technical ability, team-working and ability to work to deadlines.
Is the biotechnology industry secure?
Each of the world's top 10 biopharmachem companies has a presence in Ireland. The biopharmachem sector maintained its position as the largest exporter of goods from Ireland in 2017 and the sector directly employs approximately 30,000 people. Currently, the biopharmachem industry in Ireland is vibrant and expanding and over the past 10 years, close to €10 billion has been invested in manufacturing and research sites around the country.
Quality Control Analyst
"I completed a BSc (Honours) in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology at CIT and graduated in 2018. The course covered a variety of topics from Microbiology to Validation Science, providing an array of possible job opportunities as well as making its students highly sought after by many of the multinationals here in Ireland. The quality of lecturing was enthusiastic and energetic, which encouraged students to get actively involved in the course and made it a very enjoyable learning experience.
I found the work placement aspect of the course in third year to be extremely beneficial as it provides students with opportunity to experience the reality of a work-based environment. This experience, in combination with my academic studies, equipped me with the necessary technical skills and knowledge to secure employment after college.
While completing my final year, I was selected as one of two students to undertake a Graduate Programme in Janssen Sciences Ireland in Ringaskiddy Co. Cork. Following on from this, I have secured employment as a Quality Control Analyst in Janssen Sciences Ireland. The Janssen Graduate Programme is a collaborative programme across all Johnson & Johnson Campus Ireland Sites and focuses on integrating students from college into the working world."
Quality Control Analyst
“I completed a BSc (Honours) in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology at CIT. The course content and quality of lecturing were of a high scientific standard and I was much sought after by many of the multinationals here in Ireland.
The work placement aspect of this course was invaluable in preparing me for the real working environment and provided a useful practical knowledge base. With the support, and the quality of the lectures at CIT, I was well equipped with the scientific knowledge and technical ability for a successful career.
Shortly after graduating, I secured employment as a Cell Culture Scientist at Pfizer Biotechnology facility in Dublin. I have since moved to Janssen Biologics where I have a full-time position as a Quality Control Analyst in the Pharmaceutical Development and Manufacturing Science Department.”