Screen Shot 2015-10-27 at 09.27.56NORTH East chemical research and development company, High Force Research, is helping to inspire the next generation of female scientists.

Budding chemists from Durham High School for Girls were given a talk about pursuing careers in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry by High Force Research head of business development Dr Stella James and chemist Angela Armes.

The women, who both hold key positions at the company based at Bowburn in County Durham, visited their local school to provide youngsters with an insight into pursuing science careers.

High Force Research has provided a range of services allied to new product development in pharmaceutical, biotechnology and fine chemicals industries for more than 25 years.

Some 25 sixth formers and Year 10 and 11 chemistry pupils attended the lunchtime talk in the school library, and the youngsters admitted it fuelled their love of science.

High Force head of business development Dr Stella James said: “We place a high priority on nurturing home-grown talent by recruiting from North East universities and helping young people develop careers in the pharmaceutical and chemical industry, which has been traditionally a male-dominated field.

“Women have made relatively big gains in the chemical business in recent years, with more women serving as directors at chemical companies than ever before. But there is still huge scope to increase in the number of women coming into the industry.

“Visiting Durham High School for Girls was a great opportunity to come into the local community and encourage more young women to consider future careers in the pharmaceutical and chemical business – and perhaps even at High Force Research.”

Pupils were given an opportunity to ask questions and receive advice on their career path.

Yasaman Mousavi, 18, said: “I was very interested in hearing about the success of women in science and also what happens in the process of making drugs as I want to study pharmacy.”

Kate Potts, 16, said: “I thought it was a really interesting talk because it gave an insight into research about drugs because I am interested in pharmacy.”

Established in 1988, High Force Research has supported medical and scientific research advances that have benefited the world. The independently owned company is expert in developing and scaling up complex syntheses of molecules used by researchers in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, diagnostics and chemical sectors.