Pamela Norton <pamela.norton at mail.tju.edu> wrote in message news:<070120021340400260%pamela.norton at mail.tju.edu>...
>> It's great that you are happy with your decision. Can you tell us a
> little bit about what you chose to do instead of sticking to the
> academic route? What have been the advantages/trade-offs, in addition
> to the extra time that you mention?
After my postdoc, I went to work for a very small biotech company
(actually a contract research organization), doing molecuar biology
work. I really wasn't thrilled with the labwork, but I figured it was
industry experience so I'd stick with it for a while. After three
months I had the opportunity to move into business development and I
really loved it. Among other things, I was writing workplans for
proposals, identifying potential new customers, and new markets for
our products. Then we got acquired, and were restructured a couple of
times, then the layoffs started, etc. etc. I ended up in project
management which I discovered I really didn't like very much at all.
So I left and joined the Technology Transfer office of a
well-respected private university about a month ago. I'm now involved
in commercializing university technology. My industry experience is
really quite valuble here. Plus I get to learn new, cutting edge
So I didn't really have any sort of plan when I left academia. I was
very surprised that I really liked and understood the business side of
biotech. The people are interesting, and it is nice to feel like part
of a team.
There are a few things I miss about academia. I really liked teaching.
I liked making new discoveries, no matter how small. But I wasn't
ready to relocate once again for a faculty position (or another
postdoc, which was more likely), I didn't like the long hours anymore,
and I found that I really wasn't into writing manuscripts (although
that may have more to do with a somewhat difficult postdoc advisor).
And, quite frankly, I was tired of being broke. I doubled my salary by
going into industry, and now in Tech Transfer I'm being paid even more
(which is a bit unusual).
So that's the story of my wandering career, I hope it makes some