Sharing our knowledge through international internships
We are delighted to introduce the newest members of Cawthron’s own melting pot: Duffy Piziki, from the Solomon Islands, Frederique Visscher and Maarten Sleiderink from the Netherlands.
Duffy, Frederique and Maarten are working with us through overseas internship and cross-training programmes, helping with the day-to-day processing of samples and, in so doing, gaining valuable insights and work experience in a commercial testing laboratory.
Duffy works for Soltuna Ltd., a fish export company based in Noro in the Solomon Islands. He is here in Nelson for eight weeks to learn about microbiology testing techniques under the NZ Aid Scholarships, a training programme aimed at upskilling technical staff in specific areas of fisheries management. Duffy has found the experience to be very interesting and has learnt a lot of new things that he will be able to take back and use in his role in the laboratory at Soltuna Ltd. when he returns home.
This is the second time we have hosted a staff member from Soltuna, and this training programme is part of ongoing consultancy work that Cawthron Analtyical Services undertakes in the Pacific. This work, aimed at helping local laboratories obtain international accreditations and providing testing services in situ, sees Cawthron assisting with upskilling staff and building capability.
Frederique and Maarten, are students from the ROC van Twente Polytechnic in Enschede, the Netherlands. They are here on a three-month internship to gain further experience before finishing their laboratory analyst and process technology qualifications. On completing their studies they both plan to go on to study microbiology and chemistry, respectively, at the University of Groningen. Maarten has found his experience in the food chemistry laboratory to be very useful for the future and it has helped him to prepare for living independently when he goes to University next year. Frederique has been working in the Microbiology laboratory and said that “Cawthron is a really good place to learn, and all the things I learn here will be useful for me in other jobs back home.”
This is the fifth year that Cawthron has hosted Dutch interns in the laboratory. The section heads of both the Chemistry and Microbiology labs found that the interns have a good level of technical ability, fit in well with the team and, like our staff, are keen to deliver quality results to our customers.