The Clinical Trial Assistant (CTA) Intern will experience how a clinical trial unit functions and will specifically learn how to assist in providing administrative and clerical support to ensure effective and efficient team operations. With the support and guidance of experienced team members, the CTA intern will:

  • Assist in maintaining appropriate regulatory documents and ensuring regulatory compliance in the conduct of clinical trials
  • Act as the main communication conduit between clinical trial sponsors
  • Gain an overview and learn the importance of the CTA role during their internship.

Writing trial protocols and publishing

Interns will not be involved in writing or publishing trial protocols.  Trial protocols are written by trial sponsors: commercial, collaborative group or investigator initiated. However, you or your team may be acknowledged in clinical trials publications authored by the main trial investigator.

After the internship, you may end up with a career in research project management (leading project planning and managing a team responsible for the project's delivery from ideation through to completion), where you may assist investigators in writing trial protocols for investigator-initiated trials. But this is not something to expect within the internship period.

Being a clinical trial investigator

Interns do not perform the role of a Clinical Trial Investigator. To be an investigator, you must have the medical background and expertise required to oversee and manage trial patients. Although you are not an investigator, you will be part of a collaborative research team, working alongside renowned clinicians and experts in cancer clinical trials. You will always be exposed to innovative research ideas and treatment breakthroughs in cancer research.

Conducting clinical assessments

Interns do not conduct clinical assessments of trial participants, which requires an appropriate medical background. However, you will be able to manage and coordinate the patient treatment journey while on trials, by liaising with a multidisciplinary clinical team. You will be able to learn about the hospital environment and healthcare system in Australia.

A host site is best described as a Victorian hospital or health service participating in the SKILLED internship program. Learn more about The Royal Children’s Hospital (one of the host sites) in the video below:

  • Clinical Trial Assistant
  • Clinical Trial Assistant with advanced duties
  • Clinical Trials Pharmacist
  • Clinical Research Associate (CRA)
  • Governance Officer
  • Budgets and Contracts Coordinator
  • Research Assistant
  • Lab Technician
  • Study Coordinator

Host sites complete an expression of interest and provide detailed site information, so VCCC Alliance can ensure high standards of training and supervision are maintained. This also ensures the intern receives the necessary experience across all areas of the required competencies. There are many host sites that have been consistently involved with the program since 2019.

Matching interns to sites are based on many factors, including knowledge, size and structure of the unit within the site, applicant’s previous experience, career aspirations and geographic location.

Interns are matched to sites by an expert panel, with applicant preferences and personal circumstances considered.  All sites have been deemed suitable to ensure the best possible internship and training experience. The intern is not obliged to accept the placement location offered, however due to the complexity involved with matching interns, an alternative may not be available.

A small number of placements are on a rotation / shared placement arrangement, but most placements are at one site for the duration of placement. If you are going to be offered a rotational placement, this will be discussed with the applicant. One week rotation through Parkville Cancer Clinical Trial Unit (PCCTU) will be scheduled from around week 12. Please see the training outline.

No. All training outlined in the internship program will be covered by the VCCC Alliance.

Yes. Vaccination requirements for interns are the same as all healthcare professionals in the healthcare sector in line with Victorian Government policy.

If successful in being offered placement, these checks will be conducted in accordance with site policy, prior to commencement at site.

Yes. Regionally placed interns will be reimbursed costs of pre-approved expenses to return to Melbourne for in-person mandatory training.

As interns are not employees, there is no leave entitlement as such.  However, CTA interns are permitted a total of three days unplanned absence (in relation to illness / unforeseen emergencies) during the internship. Interns are not required to attend placement on Victorian Public Holidays.  Interns can also access three days planned absence, in consultation with their placement site. This is encouraged to occur mid-way through the placement.

The intern is responsible for attending the Host Site and receiving skills training from the Host to meet the training requirements and Competency Framework and complete the Competency Assessment. Details of attendance: Monday – Friday between the hours of 8am and 5pm.

No, the SKILLED Internship Program is structured for full-time placements only.

VCCC Alliance is holding a virtual Q&A session. We invite you to join via the below link if you have questions requiring clarification about the SKILLED Internship that are not addressed in the FAQ, or in the recruitment information available on the VCCC Alliance website or via SEEK.

Ahead of the Q&A session, please email the Senior Manager, SKILLED Internship Program & Regional Advisor ([email protected]) if there are specific queries you would like covered within this session.

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