Helping a scientist return to work in the world of COVID

28 July 2020

It’s not every day you get to help someone back into work and join the fight against coronavirus at the same time, but our Community Works team did just that while helping scientist John this summer.


John, a very experienced science researcher and lecturer in epidemiology, contacted Community Works on the advice of his job coach. His interview confidence was a little shaky, and John wasn’t feeling overly optimistic about finding a new position after a gap in employment and taking on a temporary role.

“I requested help with job-seeking after a long period of unemployment. Jane Whiting responded quickly and assessed my needs. She provided helpful advice which was appropriate to both my background and the kinds of job applications I was making. This included website links and information about other sources of training. Jane also provided detailed, constructive feedback on my CV.

I attended a group training course on interview skills and preparation led by Emmanuelle Le Coz. I found that valuable because it provided a framework I could use for preparation and highlighted better ways of fielding competency-targeted interview questions.

“I feel sure this contributed to my success in a real-world interview which followed shortly after.”

Jane and Emmanuelle together also carried out a full-length mock interview with me individually, based on a job application I had made. They provided feedback on my performance and I feel sure this contributed to my success in a real-world interview which followed shortly after. I also felt that the one-to-one support which Jane provided via email from the outset helped with confidence building.”

John is now working at The University of Edinburgh advising healthcare managers in Zimbabwe on how to prepare for the coronavirus pandemic locally in terms of diagnosis and monitoring. It’s a very satisfying role having a direct impact on public health.

Are you also looking to get back into work or volunteering?
Find out more about Community Works and how they could help you here.

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