At Connect with DeciBio, BCLA’s first event at USC, Dr. Stephane Budel shared his experience transitioning from academia to entrepreneurship and consulting. His most consistent message was to find your calling and build expertise. In his own experience, Dr. Budel has always been passionate about identifying novel developments in life science research tools and in vitro diagnostics. Most recently, he has developed a strong interest in tracking the progress and impact of disruptive technologies. As a vehicle for his passion, Dr. Budel founded DeciBio so that he could become a leader in the field of cutting-edge technologies, such as next generation sequencing. “It’s perfectly fine for your interests to evolve over time, but it’s good to have a goal in mind and focus on building expertise in a particular industry segment” he said.
Many of the presentation attendees came because of an interest in consulting. In this regard, Dr. Budel’s advice was to cultivate an area of interest, whether it is through regular blogs or a student organization- something to highlight your interests and to develop a success story. “I’d rather see a resume with one or two impressive extracurricular activities, than a resume with half a dozen positions in various clubs”, he said. When applying to consulting firms, he suggested applying to as many as 30 firms if you are really committed to consulting. This will increase the chances of securing an offer. Additionally, it is important to tailor your applications, especially when applying to smaller firms, and ideally talk to a current employee.
While the process of obtaining a job in consulting is daunting and the job itself can be intense, if you are passionate about the area in which you work, it is a rewarding endeavor. Even if consulting is not your end goal, it can act as a stepping stone to different careers such as project management in bioscience industries.
Following his presentation, Dr. Budel answered any remaining questions over pizza and beer. What a fitting end to a great event with Dr. Budel, DeciBio and BCLA! Thanks to the USC Neuroscience Graduate Program for funding the event!