Hello there bloggies!
As you may know, I have just started a new position in industry after doing my Ph.D. and postdoctoral fellowship in academia. Basically, that means I spent my research life working within the universe of my own labs and our collaborators. Well, that and begging funding agencies like the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Science Foundation (NSF) for money to fund our work.
Doing such work within my specific fields meant that I had to learn the language, jargon, and common acronyms that went along with my field. That meant as a human geneticist I would constantly toss around terms like GWAS, rare variants, LD, FDR corrections, population stratification, exome, and transcriptome with little consideration that non-hardcore human geneticist would have no idea what I was talking about.
Well, I am currently one of those people who have no idea what anyone is talking about. Researchers in industry speak an entirely different language! Shouldn’t science just be science everywhere?! Why does everything need to be an acronym? I swear I suffer from acronym dyslexia. I wrote NFS for the National Science Foundation and called my F01 grant an NSRA for years (see there I go using acronyms…gah!).
Anyway, my new co-workers toss around terms such as early vs. late development, TID, ROP, pre-clinical evaluation, and Phase 1-3 trials like it is nothing. Some of these terms I at least have heard of before. But others I swear they are just making up in sort of a faux-hazing experiment for the new guy.
I should have anticipated this, but alas I still found myself a little surprised. Just like a new language, I will need to spend time and effort to learn what these terms/acronyms mean and the implications they have for my new work. Add to the list of new things to get used to in industry.
A colleague of mine sent me this article once she learned I was considering industry from Michael Ehlers in Cell (PubMed & Article). He not only mentions the jargon of industry, but other really interesting points about the transition to industry. I also found a quick glossary of common drug discovery, which can be quite handy.
Thank you for stopping by the blog. I’ve almost survived my 4th week in industry (thank goodness for the holiday break). I will keep you all updated with my thoughts, observations, and experiences over the weeks.
Any thoughts on the transition from academics to industry? Any specific aspects you’d want to know from someone who just started the transition. Hit me up in the comments below or on twitter @DrFsThoughts.
Have a lovely day bloggies!