The Nexus of Educational, Useful and Just Plain Impressive
KGI SoCal PDA Student Chapter Creates New Science and Technology Journal
A lot of blood, sweat and tears can be shed in nine months! But when you come out with a final product that you're really proud of, it all seems worth it. If you have any doubts, just ask the KGI students who make up the SoCal Parental Drug Association (PDA) student chapter. They've spent the past academic year putting together a Nexus Journal on the theme of "Process Validation: A Lifecycle Approach" in collaboration with the PDA SoCal chapter.
The recently-launched 82-page science and technology journal was created with several goals in mind, says co-editor Varant Shirvanian, MBS '14.
"We wanted to create a valuable resource of information that communicates recent industry trends and regulatory guidance to industry professionals, and we also thought it would be an opportunity to strengthen relationships between the future life science professionals here at KGI and those currently working in the sector," he says.
In addition to Shirvanian, the KGI Nexus editorial team consisted of PDA SoCal student chapter president Joanna Naymark, MBS '14, associate editors Sara Herrmann, Joel Greggain, Kekoa Iobst, web editor Daphne Darmawan, all MBS '15, and co-editor Brian Underhill, co-founder of the Irvine-based life sciences consulting firm BioSPEQ, Inc. and president-elect of the PDA SoCal Chapter.
The idea for the Journal was conceived in July of 2013, when Underhill and Shirvanian met to initiate a collaborative project between the PDA SoCal Chapter and the PDA SoCal Student Chapter. Over the course of the year, the Nexus editorial team worked diligently to collect articles from subject matter experts in the life science industries and combined their creative skills with the knowledge gained from their KGI education to create the Nexus. The issue contains articles written by scientists and executives at leading companies such as Allergan, Amgen and Thermo Fisher Scientific, among others. Article topics run the gamut from a lifecycle approach to validation of water systems to the use of disulfide reducing agents in biotechnology.
In his editor's letter Underhill described his year-long collaboration with the KGI student editorial team as "inspiring".
"Working with the students from KGI's PDA Student Chapter on the vision and execution of the Nexus Journal has been a privilege and great inspiration. I feel extremely blessed to have had the opportunity to work alongside so many young, driven and exceptionally intelligent people," he writes.
KGI President Sheldon Schuster agrees: "Every day, I'm presented with new reasons to be proud of the work our students are doing here," he says. "The Nexus Journal is a superb example of how KGI students don't just absorb information but they go out and create educational opportunities for themselves. They take the initiative and that's one of the many reasons they're sought after by life science companies when they graduate.
"The Nexus Journal will be released on a quarterly basis and will be managed by the PDA SoCal Student Chapter news and media team, according to Shirvanian, who described the experience of creating the Nexus Journal as its founding co-editor in his editor's letter.
"It has taught me valuable lessons in leadership and teamwork, enriched my professional development, and helped me establish lasting friendships and professional relationships that I will take with me into my professional career in the life sciences," he writes. "As I prepare to graduate this May, I'm confident the KGI Nexus team will strive to perpetuate this journal to new heights on the way to maximizing its value potential for the life science industries."
The Nexus Journal is available to download for free, from the PDA SoCal Student Chapter website: http://www.socalstudentpda.org/#!nexus-journal/c1wk2