From macabre curiosity to forensic science
Gemma Taggart, a third-year Bachelor of Forensic Science student, has had a fascination with the macabre from a very young age. She is drawn to the creepy things which people would instantly think “EW” or “GROSS”. So, choosing to study forensic science was a no-brainer, “I found that Griffith was one of the few places that had the degree and because it was so close by, I felt that it was my calling,” recalls Gemma.
Gemma explains that at Griffith she, “has never felt like she has had to tackle anything alone, there is always someone to help you to achieve, succeed and push you. I love coming onto campus and finding a little nook where I can study, as well as catch up with friends”.
With so much going on, it can be difficult to find time to proactively prepare for your future career. That’s where the Griffith Sciences PLUS program comes in, which offers professional learning for career development and employability.
“Weekly workshops were so manageable and gave such amazing insight and aide into what you can do to get the most out of your degree as well as thinking about your next steps,” Gemma says.
With guidance from the program coordinator, Gemma was able to build her resume and cover letter for prospective job applications, a LinkedIn profile and an online portfolio. Gemma is proud to be the first student to receive the Forensics PLUS Badge, which she believes will help her to stand out to her future employers.
“At Griffith I have never felt like I had to tackle anything alone, there is always someone to help you to achieve, succeed and push you. I love coming onto campus and finding a little nook where I can study, as well as catch up with friends.”
Gemma’s ultimate career goal is to become a Forensic Pathologist. In her second year, she volunteered in a paleontology lab of the Australian Research Centre for Human Evolution at Griffith University. This experience involved sorting through sediment collected from an owl roost in rural Queensland to find bones for future studies. Towards the end of her second year, Gemma secured a role as a Laboratory Assistant at Identilab – DNA Testing laboratory, compiling DNA testing kits and assisting the scientists.
Gemma says, “there is a bit of science theory to get through before you get to the more exciting stuff, so keep that in mind. That was daunting for me at first, as it was 12 years since doing any science, but I worked hard to understand it and made use of all the resources I could such as the Peer-Assisted Study Sessions (PASS) sessions for example”.
To learn more about studying a Bachelor of Forensic Science visit the Griffith University website.