Work Placement / Internship

Chemical Engineering (Pharmaceutical Supply Chain) Industrial Placements 2022

Multiple UK locations. Four Roles/Multiple Vacancies.

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We are recruiting for multiple roles within this Placement. You will be able to select your preference when you apply and we will accommodate this where possible.

What will you do: 

A Chemical Engineering placement in one of our GSK manufacturing sites will give you hands on practical application of the theory from university. The GSK Pharmaceutical Supply Chain produces active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) that are transformed into dosage forms for our patients.  This encompasses a huge variety of chemical engineering unit operations: chemistry is performed at scale (10-330 kg, depending on the product); fermentation; solids processing for tablets, inhalers, creams and ointments (batch sizes up to tonnes). This presents chemical engineering challenges: safely handling large quantities of hazardous liquids and powders; heating/cooling; mixing; correct solid microstructure. Product quality is also vital: ensuring the correct quantities of materials are charged to the reactor at the correct time and ensuring equipment avoids any contamination. Many processes are automated so chemical engineers are heavily involved with the plant control software.   

"I got so much more out of my placement than I expected!"

Be open to different sectors – Emily did a mechanical engineering degree and applied to an industrial placement with GSK, who lie within the pharmaceuticals sector. To watch the full Gradcracker/GSK webinar, click here.

During your 12 months with us, you’ll gain experience in areas such as:  

  • Changes to plant: from inception of the improvement, design and functional testing to commissioning  
  • Seeing first-hand how equipment and its associated control system operates  
  • Safety and/or quality risk assessments  
  • Project management and planning  
  • Leading root cause analysis investigations.  
  • A range of manufacturing processes depending on the site. Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient production involves reactions, separations, distillation, crystallisation and drying. Solid dosage form production has powder blending, milling, tablet compression, coating of tablets. Liquid, cream and ointment dosage forms have mixing, emulsification and bottle filling.   

Whichever role you go into you will be applying the skills you already have and developing new skills such as team working, effective communication and time management. You will work with and learn from an experienced team of multi-disciplined engineers. They will coach and mentor you during your year to help you achieve your potential.  

Locations & Roles available:  

Barnard Castle 

The Barnard Castle site is located in the North East of England is sited within the County Durham countryside. Barnard Castle is a key site for GSK with a large number of New Products coming through development at site. An opportunity exists for a chemical engineer to work in our oral solid dose (OSD) value stream.  

The successful candidate will operate across and within both the Operations and the Capital Project Engineering teams - comprised of approximately 45 personnel and is supported by a team of technical experts in the ways of work. The role provides a broad scope of work that will support the site in achieving compliance to Safety and Quality Standards as well as production outputs. You will also support site capital projects to the agreed scope of works, timescale and cost, and will be responsible for co-ordinating designated activities from implementation to handover to the client. You will support and eventually lead Root Cause Analysis for Process Issues mainly focussed in the manufacturing areas: Tablet Compaction, Compression and Coating, and Suspension Granulation.  


Montrose is a 45-acre primary manufacturing site, located in the North East of Scotland, by the sea. At this site, fourteen different active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) are manufactured into a variety of formats (tablets, inhalers, creams etc.) for use in respiratory, HIV and other products. 

You will be involved in the support to day-to-day manufacture of APIs as well as capital projects. This will offer you opportunities to consolidate, and gain first-hand experience, on what you have learned during your studies about unit operations such as crystallisation, distillation, chemical reactions, drying, filtration etc. You will also have opportunities to gain experience in plant design, automation, process safety, technical transfers, project management, sustainability, quality, etc, in a highly regulated pharmaceutical environment. This will not only help you develop further your technical skills but also, through interactions with other functions on site, leadership and communication skills, fundamental to your performance. As a member of the largest Process Engineering team in Pharma Supply Chain you will have the opportunity to work alongside, and learn from, other Process Engineers with vast experience in the manufacture of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients. 


The Ware site is the largest site in the GSK network with a thriving early talent community. We manufacture and supply a huge range of different pharmaceutical products from our Respiratory and Oral Solid Dose (tablet) Supply Chains. You will be working within our technical and operations teams putting your university knowledge into practical applications. This may include identifying and working on process improvement work and new product or process projects as well as investigating deviations, writing technical reports and assisting in analysing and visualising data from our manufacturing processes.  


GSK Worthing celebrates 60 years of history in pharmaceutical manufacturing in 2021.   One of our key products is Augmentin in tablet form and we manufacture approx. 42 million packs per year. Worthing site is situated on the South Coast about 30 minutes from Brighton and 1 hour by train from London, offering a good degree of extracurricular activities outside of work.   

At Worthing, we have several opportunities available for chemical engineering students in our site technical team and in our Bio Process Science (BPS) team. 

The role within the site technical team involves supporting the manufacture of our Oral products, comprising process steps from powder blending, milling, tablet compression, coating of tablets and secondary packaging. You will be exposed to project work, day to day plant support activities, complaint and deviation root cause investigations, validation, process improvement activities, data analysis and much more. 

The role in our Bio Process Science (BPS) team will give you hands-on, technical experience in the scale-up and optimisation of the processes used to manufacture biopharmaceutical products. You will gain experience in the downstream processing of enzyme’s, small molecules, monoclonal antibodies and vaccines. You will develop an understanding of unit operations such as cell disruption, clarification, concentration, immobilisation, filtration and chromatography. The work is predominantly laboratory based with a focus on data generation and interpretation in order to contribute towards the development of efficient processes that can be introduced to large-scale production sites.  You will work with colleagues from a range of specialities, both in R&D and in manufacturing sites around the world, giving you great exposure to the roles on offer within the company as well as experience in communicating with people from a variety of backgrounds.

Degree Requirements:

  • Studying an accredited undergraduate degree in an IChemE  
  • You will have completed a minimum of 2 years of your undergraduate degree but will not have graduated at the start of your placement. You will be expected to provide evidence from your university to show you will be an undergraduate student for the duration of the placement year. 

You’ll need:  

  • A passion for Chemical engineering in a pharmaceutical manufacturing environment  
  • Attention to detail  
  • Strong analytical skills  
  • Drive to get things done  
  • To be a team player  
  • Continuous improvement mindset  
  • Excel / Data skills  
  • Ability to demonstrate qualities aligned with GSK Values and Expectations 


  • A salary of £21,000, plus a bonus  
  • Access to GSK resources such as employee assistance programmes, private healthcare, and training and development.  

Start Date: July 2022  

Location: Barnard Castle, Montrose, Ware, Worthing. 

Worthing is a Penicillin Manufacturing site in the UK - please consider this if you are applying to a role here and are allergic to penicillin. 

Application deadline: We recommend you apply as soon as possible, because we accept ongoing applications and will close this vacancy once we have enough applications.  

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Opportunity Overview

  • Ongoing
  • Multiple vacancies
  • £21,000 + benefits
  • All grades
  • Year-long
  • Ware, Hertfordshire, Montrose, Angus, Worthing, West Sussex and Barnard Castle, County Durham
    (Show map)

Preferred Disciplines...

  • Analytics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biology
  • Biomedical
  • Biotechnology
  • Chemistry
  • Data Science
  • Environmental Science
  • Information Technology
  • Pharmacology
  • Physics
  • Science
  • Software
  • Systems

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