Read Time: 4 Minutes
Program: Business Analytics
The massive impact of big data in the fields of healthcare and pharmaceutical industries can be well gauged by the way it is being extensively used to tackle disease treatment and prevention, and is influencing drug discoveries. As a result, healthcare professionals and pharma industries are vying with each other to access and analyze patients’ medical profiles to widen their revenue base and develop newer drugs. Historically, it has been difficult to predict how drugs work in routine clinical practice, but with the availability of real-time data from insurance claims and fitbits, data that was hitherto considered to be little use has suddenly turned into a treasure trove. One of the areas in which data analytics is playing a transformative role in the field of oncology. Cancer specialists the world over are collecting and analyzing the increasingly large amount of patients’ data to identify effective drugs for cancer treatment and speed up the process of cancer drug discovery-based on their analysis of tumor characteristics. My stint at ZS Associates exposed me to the significant steps in the analysis of data and has allowed me to work with international experts in deriving actionable inputs from large and small datasets. This forms the basis of my aspiration to work in the analytical diagnostics and patient care sector, to develop intelligent solutions for enhancing the quality of patients’ profiles, to provide customized patient care. In keeping with this, I wish to pursue an MS in business analytics from ______ University.
During my first professional tenure at ZS Associates, my work focused on leveraging the primary data to develop insights which help the clients take strategic decisions in oncology markets. The scope of my work involved identifying potential markets across Europe, Asia and the US, for drug discovery, profiling user segments, studying market response to a given drug, conducting promotional activities through concept testing various messaging strategies and understanding the issues and challenges faced by patients and oncologists. One of the most notable assignments that I worked on was understanding the market need to identify the specifications of drug that the doctors needed in the oncology market space to help the client understand which type of clinical trial to focus on. I was additionally responsible for managing follow-up qualitative interviews with these doctors from countries like USA and Germany and generating insights based on drug discoveries and clinical trials.
With my efforts being appreciated by the management at ZS Associates, I was deputed to their Princeton officer for a month, to work with clients across US, Germany, and the UK, and understand their needs for newer cancer-based drug. My subsequent project involved survey design, interviewing physicians and carrying out data analysis. Exposure to global projects enhanced my understanding of data collection and analysis. I also had the opportunity to visit Princeton University and interact with aspiring doctorate students to understand their ongoing research comprising ‘using big data for cancer care’. My continued valuable contribution earned me a promotion in two years. I now lead a team of 6-7 associates, mentoring them on the best practices at work, orienting them with the ZS’ software set up (Delaunay, excel, R, powerpoint), and helping them hone their interpersonal skills. The ability to handle, process and analyze large volumes of data sets sourced from hybrid systems in varying types and formats validated my aspiration of becoming a potential business analyst.
My alma mater, IIT Guwahati, one of the premier institutes for technical education in India, provided me with a strong theoretical and practical foundation in statistics and healthcare. An abiding resolve to work in the healthcare sector led me to pursue undergrad studies in biotechnology. My undergrad curriculum comprised courses such as Immunology, Bioinformatics, Biosensors and Computational Biology, which exposed me to the composition and modes of operation of different healthcare sectors. Immunology exposed me to the field of oncology and motivated me to pursue analytics to provide the healthcare sector with better decision making tools and devices. I followed up my undergrad education by working with an oncology lab, where I focused on desk research followed by wet lab experiments. This stint helped me learn about the different types of cancer and the various diagnosis, detection and treatment options used to treat cancer. I then shifted to the biosensors-focused lab, as I enjoyed the course and wanted to broaden my career options. Here, I developed a low-cost paper-based biosensor to detect cholesterol. The objective was to design an environmentally friendly, low-cost device to help with cholesterol detection in diabetic patients. These stints made me realize that my potential to analyze data and provide real-time decision-making tools to the healthcare sector was greater than conducting research on available data. I have taken up online courses in R and Python programming to gain advanced knowledge and further my career prospects as an analyst.
Alongside my academic commitments, I have simultaneously pursued extracurricular activities throughout my school and college life. I represented my school and college in national level badminton events, winning some of the games impressively. I managed an event called Technical Fest, organized by my college which had a footfall of about 10,000 people. I was also a part of my hostel management committee, taking care of all the technical responsibilities. Currently, I volunteer for Teach for India, an NGO, where I teach English to high school children from low-income families. I worked with Zariya, a ZS care initiative, where students who could not miss out on school education owing to personal reasons were taught basic English and mathematics. Handling and managing events successfully at a large scale and serving the less fortunate enabled me to understand and appreciate my responsibilities beyond education and helped me evolve as a person and inculcated in me a deep sense of social awareness and prepared me to deal with challenging pressing situations adeptly.
Following my graduation, I would like to work as a senior data analyst or analytics consultant with leading organizations like as PWC, McKinsey & Company and Deloitte, and focus on the healthcare sector,to streamline the overall process of data collection, provide better insights from medical data, enhance patient profile management and help in identifying better treatment options and appropriate medications for critically ill patients. Considering my current skillsets, innate interests, enriching professional experiences and evaluating the potential of my intended career option, I feel this is the opportune time to pursue a master’s degree in business analytics from Purdue University, which has an enviable legacy of producing engineers full of potential and promise, who continue to dominate the analytics domain.
With the Purdue University being renowned for its academic excellence and flexible course structure, the business analytics course offers a flexible curriculum allowing a student to explore and learn from wide ranging subjects comprising interdisciplinary fields like technology and management. The program which includes internship opportunities, seminars involving interactions with business leaders and other skill development workshops, will enable me to gain valuable hands-on experience and gain a guided perspective in understanding and remedying the issues prevailing in the healthcare domain. The core management courses offered by the University like Management of Organizational Data, Marketing in Global Environment and Big Data technologies are closely aligned to my areas of interests.
(need a fitting conclusion)