Isaac Barr GSK Graduate Image

Isaac Barr

University of Melbourne
Engineering Graduate - 2015 to 2017
Isaac studied Bachelor of Science (Chemical Systems) and Master of Engineering with Distinction (Chemical) at University of Melbourne

Why did you want to work for GSK?

I think what I really found appealing about GSK was the breadth of opportunities that I could pursue as a Chemical Engineer. Whether I want to move into a role where I can help to develop new molecules in the lab to treat devastating illnesses such as HIV, a role where I can design and implement new chemical processes involving complex chemistry, or a role where I can work in a variety of ways to deliver critical medicine to markets all around the world; GSK as a company offers those opportunities. As a graduate, not knowing which direction I may want to take my career, what better place to start?

What degree and university are you a graduate from?

Bachelor of Science (Chemical Systems) and Master of Engineering with Distinction (Chemical), University of Melbourne

What type of work do you do?

I work in a Technical Development team within GSK’s ‘Global Manufacture and Supply’ business. To summarise, the function of a Technical Development team is to introduce new medicines into commercial production within GSK. This is an incredibly exciting and challenging role as a Chemical Engineer, as there are often many technical challenges to overcome in order to deliver new products.

What was your pathway into the business?

I applied directly to the Future Leaders Program having previously completed Vacation Programs with ExxonMobil and Orica.

What rotation(s) have you completed so far?

I am currently beginning my second rotation in Singapore at Jurong, a site where active ingredients for several of GSK’s key medicines are produced. Here, I am working in the Technical Development team as a Chemical Engineer supporting the delivery of new production equipment to expand production capacity, as well as supporting routine production.

What are the best aspects of being part of the Future Leaders program at GSK?

There are so many great aspects of the program, it is hard to select just a few. For me, the program has allowed me to live and work abroad in a role that embodies exactly what being a Chemical Engineer means to me. It is pretty hard to top that! But some other great aspects of the program include the flexibility the program gives graduates in allowing them to pursue roles that will benefit them, the access to GSKs management that graduates are afforded, the training that graduates receive, and the high regard in which the program is held internally.

What are some of the challenges of being part of the Future Leaders program at GSK?

There are many new challenges which arise every day at GSK, which is why my job is so exciting! The FLP takes the title seriously, and graduates are given every opportunity to develop skills that will grow them into future leaders. I think this is also reflected in the level of responsibility that graduates are given and the way graduates are stretched outside their comfort zone.

What advice would you give to students and graduates considering an internship or graduate role at GSK?

The GSK FLP is not your average graduate program. The intent of the program is to grow the future leaders of the company; with that comes a lot of perks that will help kick-start your career! Not only that, but you will have the opportunity to work in a variety of great areas that truly make a difference to people lives.

How would you describe the impact of being part of the Future Leaders program at GSK, on your career so far?

While I am only at the beginning of my career, I feel the FLP has empowered me to shape how my career is going to look. I have developed a global network of people I can reach out to throughout my career, and have been given experiences that I would otherwise not have if not for the FLP.