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Another Type of Story Teller – The Quantitative Researcher

Another Type of Story Teller – The Quantitative Researcher

Career Story by Nan Tracy Zheng, PhD, Senior Manager and Research Analyst at RTI International

In my third year of graduate study, I decided to focus my research on nursing home care. Most researchers who do quantitative research of nursing home care in the US use Minimum Data Set (MDS) - a standard data collection instrument with more than 500 items that all nursing homes serving Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries are required to use for collecting and submitting residents’ health and treatment information. Although it’s called the Minimum Data Set, it is nowhere near small. As I joined my advisor, Dr. Helena Temkin-Greener, on a project focused on the quality of care for nursing homes and started thinking about my dissertation in the same area, she advised me that “from now on, you are going to eat, drink, and breath your data”.

Find and Align With Your Mission

Find and Align With Your Mission

Career Story by Tim Bassler, Executive Director of West Point Quality at Merck

The best advice I ever got from a mentor was to develop a mission statement, revisit that mission over time, and use it to help make career decisions.  My mission is:  Work to Live, Enjoy Work, and Make a Difference.  I set this mission statement 20 years ago and have not changed it since.  As I reflect on my career this mission has served as a barometer for my actions.  

Consider a Postdoctoral Fellowship In A Federal Laboratory – Consider NRC RAP

Consider a Postdoctoral Fellowship In A Federal Laboratory – Consider NRC RAP

Career Story Plus by Christopher Kovacs, PhD Candidate (defending in December 2018!)

Thinking about life post-graduate studies can be a daunting exercise in self humility – most of us know what we want to do; but the specific where, when and how to get there often forces the topic out of mind only to be replaced by doubt.   That was certainly my own disposition until very recently.  Thankfully, I learned about a tremendous postdoctoral fellowship opportunity that appealed to my own future aspirations and I am happy to be able to share my experience in hopes that someone else can similarly benefit from it.

Working in the Valley of the Shadow of Death - Transferring New Technologies from the Research Lab to Commercial Manufacturing

Working in the Valley of the Shadow of Death - Transferring New Technologies from the Research Lab to Commercial Manufacturing

Career Story by Rick Lawless, Director of Industry Programs at NC State University

During the first 21 years of my working career, I performed various roles associated with the commercial production of industrial biochemicals, clinical diagnostic products, and vaccines.  My instructions were simple: manufacture products that met all expectations for quality, compliance, cost, and supply.  Of course, no one should die or get hurt in the process.  While I had some appreciation for product features and knew that countless preclinical and clinical evaluations had been conducted to prove that the products were safe and effective, I must admit that I rarely thought about how the processes made it to the manufacturing floor.

A Career Filled with Opportunity, Therapeutics, and Music!

A Career Filled with Opportunity, Therapeutics, and Music!

Career Story by Gerhard Bauer, PhD, Professor of Hematology and Oncology, and Director of The GMP Laboratory at UC Davis Institute for Regenerative Cures

            I was born and grew up in Austria, in a small town about 100 kilometers west of Vienna. At age 6 already I started to learn the classical piano, and I remember being featured as a “Kid Star” pianist at age 7. I continued to study the piano for another 8 years, but when my piano teacher wanted me to switch to atonal music and would not let me play the jazz and popular music of the 1920s and 1930s, I quit and never really touched the instrument again. And to be fair, there was no real way of studying jazz and syncopated dance music in Austria; it’s the land of classical music.  I soon moved to Vienna where I attended college and medical school.