Faculty of Science - Leading creativity and innovation in the sciences

Our graduates

Because science plays a vital role in addressing the key issues that confront us and future generations, studying the Sciences opens up a wide range of career opportunities: Our Programme options attract a diverse study body who are now working in a variety of professions.

Master of Bioscience Enterprise - Tom Donovan

Head and shoulder profile image of Tom Donovan with green leafy trees in the background.
Tom Donovan

"As someone passionate about science but uninterested in actually conducting research, the University of Auckland’s forward-thinking masters degree in Bioscience Enterprise (MBioEnt) was an exciting opportunity to broaden the employment possibilities of my undergraduate science degree. The MBioEnt course delivered on this promise by providing a broad knowledge base that helped me move into work that matched my interests and skills.

"The MBioEnt degree’s associated internship program gave me journalistic experience to begin my career in life sciences communications. It is highly unusual for university graduates to come to the workplace with relevant work experience and an appreciation for the many complexities of a business (and life sciences businesses are particularly complex), so the MBioEnt was a useful differentiator in that regard.

"Since graduating, I have consulted on communications for dozens of private and public biotech companies, or organisations in related industries. I most recently headed communications for biologic drug developer Nexvet Biopharma (Nexvet), through its journey from seed funding to an Initial Public Offering on the NASDAQ stock exchange, and the establishment of global operations. Subsequently Zoetis, the world’s largest animal health company, has announced its intent to acquire Nexvet for US$85 million. I now consult to biotech companies globally on strategic communications projects."

Tom graduated with his MBioEnt in 2010. He is the Director of Communications at Nexvet Biopharma.

Master of Information Technology - Amulya Jagadeesh

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Amulya Jagadeesh

"When researching course options I was delighted to come across a programme that met my requirements perfectly and has been a great learning experience. The MInfoTech provides an opportunity to learn both the management and the technological sides to software engineering and how to implement the learning in a real-world scenario. By meeting people from the industry I was able to learn from their experiences."

Amulya graduated with a Master of Information Technology and has been offered full-time employment by her internship provider.

Master of Speech-Language Therapy Practice - Amy Rosenfeld

Amy stands holding a cerfticate of her degree dressed in her graduation robes.
Amy Rosenfeld

“I've been interested in speech and language since high school. I ended up studying journalism, but while travelling and learning new languages I became fascinated by psychology and linguistics, and decided I wanted a career where I could help people and make a difference.

“Speech and language therapy involves assessment and treatment of a huge range of communication and swallowing disorders both in adults and children. The MSLTP course is very intensive, and helps you to learn a lot about yourself and become very close with the people you study with. I made some fantastic friends through the course and felt very privileged to learn from some of the most respected and knowledgeable people in the SLT field. I particularly enjoyed the practical components that were emphasised throughout the course, including the opportunity to go to other parts of the country on placements.

“I love meeting new people, finding out what is important to them and helping them to get there. It is so wonderful to see improvement in your patients and the difference it can make in their lives and those of the people around them. I also enjoy the puzzle of complex cases and trying to work out the best approach.

“UoA has a great reputation for a well-rounded course that prepares you well for working as an SLT in New Zealand and overseas. The Speech Science faculty are also very supportive of students and work to understand their individual needs as learners.”

Amy graduated with a Master of Speech-language Therapy Practice in 2016 and works for the Southern District Health Board in Dunedin.  

Postgraduate Certificate in Information Technology - Gulnar Grover

Head and shoulder shot of Gulnar Grover with white background
Gulnar Grover

"In 2013, I graduated with a conjoint Bachelor of Business Studies / Bachelor of Science majoring in Human Resource Management and Psychology. After a brief stint working in recruitment I travelled around Australia. During this time I developed a passion for working with technology.

"With this in mind I enrolled into BE(Hons) at the University of Waikato. As part of my first semester I completed a first year computer science paper which sparked my interest in programming. I came across the Auckland ICT Graduate School, and felt that the Postgraduate Certificate in Information Technology was a great opportunity for me to enter the IT field in a short space of time.

"Looking back it's hard to believe the amount I learnt in just 12 weeks! The support from the tutors and the lecturers was invaluable; the casual atmosphere helped absorb some of the pressure and helped me get past the frustrations of learning to code.

"Upon completion of the PGCertInfoTech at the University of Auckland I enrolled in the Master of Information Technology at the University of Waikato. The wide variety of papers offered at masters level has allowed me to choose an area that most appeals to me. When I finish my masters I'd like to work in a company where I can combine the communication and business skills I gained in my undergraduate studies and employment, with my newly acquired technical skills as I grow a career in the ICT sector."

Gulnar completed the Postgraduate Certificate in Information Technology in 2016, and is currently enrolled in the 180-point Master of Information Technology.

Postgraduate Diploma in Forensic Science - Mickayla Dustin

Mickayla stands in the foreground of the photo wearing a blue top with her identity card hanging around her neck.
Mickayla Dustin

“Since high school, my favourite subject has been chemistry, and so I carried on with it at university. I went straight from my Bachelor of Science degree majoring in Chemistry and Biochemistry, to the Postgraduate Diploma in Forensic Science (PGDipForensic) at the University of Auckland, as I wanted the best chance of getting into the forensic science industry in New Zealand.

“The PGDipForensic programme is conjointly run with staff from ESR – the forensic science provider to the New Zealand Police, therefore it’s a great opportunity to meet potential future colleagues. The programme covers all the forensic science areas, which is pretty awesome as you come away with a wide understanding of forensic science and what each forensic team does.

“Soon after completing my degree I was offered the position of Senior Forensic Technician in the Physical Evidence Team (PE) at ESR. I was told that this position hadn’t been advertised in about 10 years, which shows how hard it is to get into this industry (which we were warned about before beginning the PGDip course). So I was very lucky with timing on that one.

“I love my job! It’s so varied. We analyse quite a few different evidence types in PE, such as fire debris, glass, and paint. I search some items, such as clothing and firearms, for blood and sample for DNA. I’m also the instrument manager for a couple of our instruments, and they often require trouble-shooting and maintenance. I often help out the clan lab team by being on their technician on-call scene roster, and attend clandestine drug laboratories with the senior scientist and Clan Lab Police team to help out with field testing and taking samples (so they can be taken back to the lab for subsequent analysis). This sometimes involves attending warrants with the Armed Offenders Squad, which can be quite exciting but also quite tiring as it usually involves a very early morning start.”

Mickayla graduated with a Postgraduate Diploma in Forensic Science in 2014 and now works at ESR as a Senior Forensic Technician in the Physical Evidence Team.

Bachelor of Science in Computer Science - Maggie Zhang

Maggie Zhang standing in front of the purple computer science timeline wall
Maggie Zhang

Maggie Zhang didn’t let the fact she was “terrible with technology” stop her from becoming a software developer. The 24-year-old had planned to do a Bachelor of Science majoring in Mathematics at the University of Auckland, until she discovered Computer Science when she took it as an optional paper in her first year.

“It opened my eyes,” recalls Maggie. “Not only did I need to use my logical thinking skills, but the result of my work was very tangible – if you write your own game, you can play your own game! So I chose Computer Science as my major, and never looked back.”

In Year 13 at Epsom Girls’ Grammar School in Auckland she took Calculus, Statistics, English, Graphic Design and Geography.  While all the subjects she chose have helped her to develop applicable skills, Calculus and Statistics have proved the most useful.

“They greatly improved my logical thinking and problem-solving skills, which are essential for a software engineer.”

Maggie completed her science degree last year, and is now working as a software engineer at Eroad, a software company on Auckland’s North Shore.

“My job involves the analysis, design, development and testing of our company’s software products. Every day is different with a new problem to solve. I’m always learning something interesting and work is challenging but never stressful.”

Computer science is a growing field, and as well as working in software engineering, graduates are employed as programmers, systems analysts, computer service engineers and computer system engineers.

If you are interested in following a similar path to Maggie, her advice is to get started as soon as possible.

“Don’t wait for someone else to teach you how to code; teach yourself. This will prepare you to be an amazing coder for sure.”

Maggie graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science in 2016 and now works at Eroad as a software engineer. (Abridged from a profile first published in Leaving School magazine, Issue #11 (2017). Photography by Alan Stevens.)