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Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology

What do Medicines Mean to You?

25 February 2016

Alumna Lorraine Reddington, Senior Engineer at GSK, returned to her alma mater to tell Chemical Engineering undergraduates about her career experience, medicines and pharmaceuticals and job opportunities available at the company.

Lorraine, graduated with an MEng  in 2006 and has spent the last 10 years working for GSK across 4 different sites and in 6 different roles, now mainly involved with global manufacturing and supply for Engineering Capital Projects.

In her talk "What Do Medicines Mean to You? A Career in the Pharmaceutical Industry" she talked about GSK company mission and products and gave an overview of her career in the pharmaceutical industry. She told the audience about her own struggles with asthma, the impact the illness has had on her life and the importance of medicines, which has driven her passion to innovate for human benefit.

GSK is a global, science-led pharmaceutical company, which puts patients at the core of everything they do, ‘engineering a better world’. A leading producer of prescription medicines, vaccines and consumer healthcare products, as well as a leader in driving research and innovation, GSK aims to get the right products to the right patients at the right time. Its mission is to ‘improve the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and life longer’. She mentioned that 80% of the 860M GSK vaccines distributed in 2013, went to developing countries. 

Lorraine also highlighted the role that engineers play in developing and manufacturing medicines, vaccines and consumer healthcare products for patients all over the world. ‘Whilst working at GSK, Engineering is applied to day-to-day issues involved in medicine manufacturing'; she commented. She talked about the processes involved in tablet making, from materials and solvent mixing to paste compression and  coating ,’We are always looking at continuous improvement of our processes’; she commented.

She told about some of the main healthcare solutions in the GSK product portfolio:  from vaccines, tables, syrups, antibiotics, to HIV, cancer and respiratory drugs, including their new innovative inhaler device for all new inhaled respiratory medicines, which has taken over a decade to develop. ‘Patients are the most important so we ensure that the quality of medicines is right’; she added.

Finally, in addition to the importance of engineering at GSK, she also shared details on the various fantastic career opportunities the company can offer to students, from apprenticeships to graduate schemes, where trainees are given the chance to move round different sites to gain experience.

For more information on careers at GSK please see
or contact her on


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