The Trailblazer: Snehal Jadey, PPM ’13
Although Snehal Jadey's earliest inspiration for pursuing a biotechnology career was her mother, who is a high school math and science teacher, she wanted to blaze her own trail—in the life sciences industry.
The only problem: there is no proven formula for getting your foot in the industry door. So Snehal, who earned a PhD in biophysics and physiology at the State University of New York in Buffalo, started looking for a way to position herself for a career in industry.
"Graduate training, although intensive and highly focused and cutting-edge, does not train for, nor expose you to industry," says the 30-year-old Mumbai, India, native. "When I read the description of KGI's Post Professional Masters in Bioscience Management (PPM) program, it seemed to be tailor-made for me."
Despite her initial attraction to the program, Snehal says the decision to pursue a PPM degree wasn't an easy one. "For students with advanced degrees without real world experience it can be very challenging to take this step because it is a major commitment in terms of time and money," she says. "You have to consistently work at all your coursework while doing your class projects and attending networking events."
For Snehal, the opportunity to participate in KGI's well-known Team Master's Projects (TMPs), in which teams of three to six students work with a sponsoring life science company to solve real-world problems, was the "deal closer" when it came to choosing to enroll in the PPM program. Her TMP was with Veracyte, which develops diagnostics for thyroid and non-small cell lung cancer. The two-semester project started with an opportunity analysis. In the first-semester, Snehal and her team were charged with identifying unmet needs for diagnostics. The second semester was spent conducting a market assessment on whether a new product idea would succeed in the market, how current competitive products already solved the problem, and whether physicians would accept the new diagnostic.
"My time on the Veracyte project offered me the real-world experience I needed. Teamwork was essential in order to find the answers the company needed and working with multiple disciplines on the project was enlightening," Snehal says. "Business courses in the context of the life sciences industry set this program apart. One year is the perfect time span to grasp the intricacies of what is expected in the corporate world and as well as to invest in transitioning ones career to industry."
The transition went pretty smoothly for Snehal, who shortly after graduation landed a job in the life science practice at Sedulo Group in Louisville, Kentucky. The location, deep in Kentucky horse country, was a definite perk for Snehal who has loved horses and all things equestrienne since she was a child.
Within six months of joining the company, she was promoted from a competitive intelligence associate analyst to a full analyst and currently handles multiple projects in which she compiles intelligence data and analyzes it for pharmaceutical company clients-helping them to maintain a competitive edge.
"Working on multiple projects at a given time, keeps me motivated and excited to learn about new therapeutic areas, drugs and industry practices," Snehal says.