Growing up in Poland, the English language was my very first passion. I followed that passion and went on to study English at university to become a qualified teacher of English as a Second Language (ESL). I graduated Master of Arts in British and American Literature and Culture at the University of Silesia in Poland in parallel with becoming a qualified teacher.
Soon after my graduation I decided to move to Ireland for a bit to spend some time among native English speakers. I started working at ICON as a Data Management Administrator and here my other passion was born – to become a Clinical Research Associate. I wanted to work in Clinical Research and be at the forefront of monitoring clinical trials, travelling to the sites and visiting hospitals across Ireland and the UK.
To further my CRA ambitions, I moved to the clinical operations department within ICON. I started from the bottom and built my career to become a CRA. I learned the tricks of the trade while working on indications such as breast cancer, CP/CPPS, invasive candidiasis and diverticulitis.
After being a CTA while also studying for my Master of Science, I was promoted to a Clinical Research Associate role. My travelling across Ireland and the UK begun.
I was working mainly on oncology studies such as breast cancer, multiple myeloma, BRAF mutation-positive tumour and CVD.
It is one of my biggest achievements. Studying a MSc programme while working in a full time position with a lot of travelling was very demanding. This experience taught me even more resilience and forced me to take my organisational skills to the next level. I could not afford to waste a minute of my day. I could also put to the test and refine all the techniques on how to study efficiently which I was taught at university when studying to become a teacher years prior.
In April 2015 it was time for a new adventure – I moved to London. With this move, I also moved from ICON to IQVIA (then called Quintiles). My monitoring sites were now based in the country where I lived and some of my sites were in London, in the city where I lived. This made for a huge reduction in my commuting, reducing my door to door time from 6 hours to sometimes 1 hour.
I was working on breast cancer studies gaining more and more experience.
PRA is the third major CRO I’ve gained my experience at where I worked on ovarian cancer and leukemia studies. All the while I was also a visit leader, mentoring and signing off on junior CRAs. Here my passion for mentoring junior CRAs really grew. This seeded my dream of creating a platform where I could share my experience so that other CRAs can benefit from the years I spent honing my craft.
I had the opportunity to work on developing Qlk.to, a start-up. I had to wear many hats as this was a start-up, including managing several projects and working with developers, learning the ins and outs of how a software as a service (SaaS) business operates. It also exposed me to working with people in various industries, such as The Times.
Driven by my passion for mentoring and a goal to make CRAs' lives easier, I created a platform to share my lessons learned from my career as a Clinical Research Associate. Through this platform, my aim is to help good CRAs become great CRAs by managing the demands of the job in a balanced way and with the insight of a person who has 10 years of experience in clinical research. I can say that all of my previous accomplishments, experiences and lessons contributed to my ultimate vocation: to teach & to mentor.
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