Internship Reports#2 - Bianca Craill's time at Ministry of Health

University of Waikato student, Bianca Craill, was awarded an internship at the Ministry of Health on the basis of her entry for the 2018 Sir Paul Callaghan Eureka! Awards - Using Neurofeedback to Improve Mental Health and Academic Success

‘I gained a lot of valuable experience from my internship with the Ministry of Health this summer. My primary task was to locate the stability data for a selection of medicines and write a report on it for the New Zealand Defence Force. After completing this, I then assisted the Medsafe Evaluators with their New Medicine Applications and Changed Medicine Notifications. The Medsafe Product Regulation team gave me a lot of support and training. I felt very included with my own laptop and desk, like everyone else, and was welcomed to the Christmas parties and shared lunches.

When not doing those main tasks, I had opportunities to sit in on meetings and learn about the workings of Medsafe and the Ministry in general. I never before appreciated the vast amount of work that is done for New Zealanders in Public Service. I also got to speak with experts about career prospects that I am interested in. Specifically, about how Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) technology will become more and more common in the future, and how this could be regulated if used for a therapeutic purpose.

I am now more set than ever to become a part of researching and advancing BCI technology.

 I’m also grateful for the opportunity to learn how to live independently in a new city. My evenings and weekends were completely free, allowing me to explore Wellington, perform in Christmas parades, learn stilt-walking and spontaneously buy a ticket to a circus festival.

The financial support covered all the living and accommodation costs, as well as leaving me with some extra to go towards my future studies.

 I originally entered Eureka hoping for a scholarship. I’m glad I landed an internship instead because of these experiences.

Expectations definitely exceeded.’