Hello, please allow me to introduce myself, my name is Joe and I joined the RubyDuke team in 2021. First and foremost I would describe myself as a scientist; I have had a long-standing obsession with understanding how things work and getting down to the ‘so what?’. Nothing is more pleasing to me than a clear and engaging explanation and, in many ways, that quest for understanding is what has driven me into this wonderful industry.
So for this blog, I invite you to follow along a visual journey of some of the data I have collected on the way, starting with some moments earlier in my life which shaped me as a scientist.
As a new graduate fresh out of vet school, practicing as a veterinary surgeon in a very busy small animal clinic (cats, dogs, rabbits etc.) in Nottingham, I solidified the knowledge gained during my degree by putting the scientific principles I had learned into practice. With a couple of years’ experience under my belt, I began to feel an itch to get out into the world and do some travelling. Adventure was calling, so I bought an old truck, packed a bag and drew a long, squiggly line on a map.
The keen-eyed amongst you will notice a couple of things from these data.
Firstly, that I became much more adept at budgeting after a very expensive first month in Europe – though I still arrived in Australia with a fairly desperate need for employment.
The second is that I managed to make money somewhere around the beginning of Asia. This was an unexpected benefit of crashing the truck in the desert, and somehow managing to sell the remaining parts to some very accommodating locals in Kazakhstan.
After 6 months living and working as a vet in Australia, I moved back to the UK. Keen to develop as a clinician, I enrolled at The University of Liverpool, studying for a certificate in veterinary imaging. Stacks of research and written case reports later; a passion for scientific writing had well and truly been awoken:
YI, performing an ultrasound scan on an octopus is not as easy as you might think.
With this newfound enthusiasm for writing, I started a blog about another interest of mine: investing. I had been fascinated with the stock market for a few years, but initially, I had found the barrier to entry incredibly high. My blog was aimed at getting young people excited about investing, to break down those jargon-filled barriers and to analyse the stock market from a scientific point of view. It also allowed me to write more frequently and hone my skills as a storyteller. Before long, my desire to continue researching and to explore my creativity took hold, and I moved from the veterinary field into the world of medical communications.
Accepting a role as a medical writer for a global healthcare communications agency, I immediately enjoyed the fast-paced environment and the opportunity to work alongside authors at the forefront of medical research. In particular, writing manuscripts, abstracts and scientific posters for publication, and creating focused educational materials such as slide decks, infographics and podcasts.
Having found the switch into med-comms so rewarding, I spoke at a veterinary diversification conference about my experience. This led to a serendipitous meeting with fellow ex-vet Ru, and luckily I was given an opportunity to join the fantastic RubyDuke team a few months later. I couldn’t be more excited to get started, to build new relationships and to bring my passion and experience to our clients.
As much as I love it, there is more to my life than healthcare-comms – and while I might not be travelling the world at the moment (far from it!), I do find other ways to enjoy myself.