By Stephen Carter
I had never been to Spain, never mind Catalonia, before I went on my secondment to ZeClinics this summer, so it was going to be a new and interesting experience regardless. As it happened, the city, the company and the people all exceeded my expectations.
Barcelona is an incredibly beautiful city, especially for someone who loves history, like me.
It’s also so easy to get around, I actually enjoyed using the public transport (all the residents complain about it, obviously, but they should try living in Dublin).
I was lucky enough to be able to live very close to the city centre, at the edge of El Gòtic. Just trying to navigate through its narrow alleys is a great way to spend an afternoon.
ZeClinics is located a bit outside the city, but relatively easy to get to by public transport (or with a lift from Vincenzo/Flavia/Jone!). It sits on a small mountain and the view of the Mediterranean you get a lunch time is nothing to complain about.
Every member of staff I met at ZeClinics was incredibly friendly and helpful, as well as extremely patient with me and my close to zero levels of Spanish and Catalan. Some of them will tell you that their English isn’t so good, but that is far from true; I had no problems talking with anyone.
In terms of research and the industry experience, I learned quite a few useful things, such as tips about gene editing in zebrafish. Most importantly, I learned that I (an ardent academic) could be happy working in industry, providing it was with a company like ZeClinics.
I had a great time in Barcelona, overall and would recommend a secondment at ZeClinics to anyone
If you do, say ¡hola! from me to Jess, Flavia, Jone, Maria, Vincenzo, Victor, Sergio, Rafa, Valentina, Valeria, Davide, Carole, Carles, Sylvia and Javi.