Monday, October 12, 2009

About me(4): McKinsey says no- Harvard says yes

In the spring of 2008, I was getting ready to leave MUSC. I didn't have a clue what I wanted to do, but I had some ideas. I wanted to job...a real job where I would make money. I wanted to live in a nice place and I wanted to be close to our families.

In the end, none of those things were really possible. The economy had just started to turn to crap and jobs were not there to be had. I was most excited about a fellowship I had been offered at Proctor and Gamble Pharmaceuticals in Cincinnati, OH. The job was perfect for the broad set of skills I had gathered through my seemingly endless education. It was with the licensing and acquisitions group at P&G. For those of you who don't know the P&G development model it is called "connect and develop." It is really a neat way of outsourcing the R&D necessary for drug discovery. Instead of doing the basic, basic, basic research themselves, they simply source and buy the most promising drug candidates from the biotech community. Recent reports by the BCG's of the world have suggested that outsourcing these activities are probably the direction pharma will head in the future. Anyway, I was going to be doing the deal sourcing for P&G, but as was standard for May 2008, the position was dissolved as the economy continued to move south.

I didn't know anything about consulting at that time, but "googled" for life sciences career and MBA and came up with McKinsey & Company. I spent 15 minutes to fill out an application, submitted it, and forgot all about it. I got a generic rejection letter a few weeks later by email.

Since jobs didn't exist, I figured a post-doc was the next logical step....after all, PI's already had grants and needed to spend the money on personnel so I should probably get a job that was already paid for.

While I won't talk a whole lot about science in this blog, I am a damn good scientist with a damn good track record. I published 6 first author papers during my PhD and presented at a number of national meetings. I ultimately decided on doing my post-doc in a lab here at the Harvard Medical School in Boston where I work in molecular metabolism in arguably the best molecular metabolism laboraotry in the world.


  1. I guess if you're in Microbiology field, working with Bacteria, it's most likely that any PhD can publish at least 3. Anyone I know from the fields publish more than 4. That's everyone. First author paper.

    Someone working in Mammalian cells, it's a dream if any PhD can publish 6 papers with 1st author during their PhD years because the probability of publishing more than 3 during PhD years with your name in 1st author place is ZERO, let alone you have so many undergrads to help you cloning. That's not gonna happen.

    Not to downplay your achievement, but I guess we have to look at which PhD fields we're looking at.

    Just drop my comment so that any readers will have a feel for it rather than 6 papers with 1st authors during PhD years become standard for every PhD.

    One of my close friend in Microbiology field, publish 1st author paper. You know how many he published during his Phd years?

    8 papers.

    When he's got to postdoc working in plants, he published in Nature. That's how good he is. But the rate of publication becomes slower because of different working fields. It's plants.

  2. Besides, I don't know why you choose black background as your blog template. It's eyes straining.

    Anyway, thanks for your contribution.