Aryan Sangwan and Madhumita Suresh hadn’t expected to go into clinical supply chain operations when they arrived from India for the Master of Business and Science (MBS) program at Keck Graduate Institute (KGI). But that’s exactly what the two 2019 MBS graduates are now doing at Amgen, a global leader in the biopharmaceutical industry.
Their Team Master’s Project (TMP) for Amgen—an effort that earned KGI’s 2018–2019 TMP Collaborative Excellence Award—led them to the company. Sangwan and Suresh were part of a KGI student consulting team given the task of evaluating, understanding, and recommending practices and technologies to improve Amgen’s supply chain processes. They were also asked to determine the risks and benefits of potential changes to the processes. The work involved interviews at clinical sites and Amgen headquarters as well as analysis of inventory and shipment data.
“When I came to KGI, I was thinking more about the science side of the biopharmaceuticals industry, but my passion is not to be restricted to one area,” says Sangwan, who earned an undergraduate degree in dentistry in India and had worked in a hospital in his native country.
Completing a TMP for Amgen also boosted Sangwan’s confidence during job interviews. He believes that helped him gain his current contract position equivalent to a senior associate within Amgen’s clinical supply chain operations function.
Hoping to turn this into a long-term role at Amgen, Sangwan notes, “There are six or seven areas within the clinical supply chain, and I want to become an expert able to connect all the dots.”
Suresh, who holds an undergraduate degree in biotechnology, was hired into a senior associate position on another supply planning and operations team at Amgen’s Thousand Oaks headquarters immediately after graduating from KGI. Now her responsibilities involve scheduling, prioritization, and efficient capacity utilization.
“The TMP helped me realize that supply chain operations is a great place to start my career and move up the ladder,” says Suresh, who had first considered product management and marketing as possible career directions within the biopharmaceutical industry. “The work is very cross-functional, which I like.”
Her immediate team at Amgen includes another of her classmates, Leslie Maurer, MBS ’19. Suresh believes it is no coincidence that Amgen has hired several of KGI’s newest graduates to work in supply chain operations.
“KGI has a good relationship with Amgen, and they were impressed with our work,” she says. “We knew the company, the workflow, and the team. That really helped. Leslie got an offer initially, and then they created another position for me because they liked us both.”