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Beyond the confines of the classroom

Life Sciences Career Talk

A lecture theater filled to maximal capacity and an atmosphere oozing with excitement awaited the biomedical science (DBS) and biotechnology (DBT) alumni at the DBS & DBT Career Talk.

The event started on an inspirational note with stories of capitalising on problems and converting them into opportunities by co-founder and director of Sciencewerke, Mr Jason Ng (DBT Class of 1994). My fellow course mates and I were inspired by his story. His generous recounting of his journey from Singapore Polytechnic (SP) graduate to entrepreneur provided useful insights for those of us considering a future in the biotechnology business. I am sure that the values that Mr Ng received from his SP education was instrumental in his journey towards establishing a foothold in the local science industry. Although we are from a very different generation, the gap was abridged by the shared values ingrained into us by SP’s education.

Next was a fun-filled dialogue session with the alumni panel of 8 members representing the spectrum of careers in biosciences. The burning questions posted by students, prior to/during the event, were mostly directed towards a student’s aspirations, coping of workload in school as well as career opportunities. Most members of the panel agreed on a consensus that passion is important for continued education in the field of science and that we need to be adaptable to our surroundings as well as embrace change around us. Many questions were answered, clearing the doubts of the students, allowing them to rethink suitable paths ahead of them.

One takeaway that I would personally like to share is the fact that we should understand where our strengths lie and thus, allowing us to make a better decision of our future paths. Candid sharing by Dr Jonathan Loh (DBT Class of 1997, A*STAR Principal Investigator) also allowed us to visualise the person behind the success and look up to them. He shared that although he loves his job in the lab, he appreciates and embrace other aspects in his life, such as his wife and his family.

Most students found the talk enriching and an eye-opener. It was also a great honour to be there and learn from the experience of our fellow alumni. As we leave the lecture theatre, I'm sure most of us aspire to be part of the panel one day.

Tan Sher Kye
DBS Current Year 2 student

The talk was a great opportunity for students of different generation to interact with one another. It was good to have an interactive session with the alumni to learn about the multiple paths ahead.

Petrina Kong
DBT Current Year 2 student

I found the career talk very interesting because I learnt about some of the opportunities available to us, and how we can use the skills we learn from our course in the working world. This talk is definitely something I will think about while I plan what I want to do after graduation!

Gabriel Wong
DBT Current Year 2 student

We are grateful to the lecturers who organised the program and also, to the alumni who made the way down from their hectic schedule to share their valuable experiences with us. On behalf of all students, I would wish to express my appreciation and gratitude to all.


Written by Tay Yu Pei
DBT Current Year 2 student