Part of The PhD Guide Series
Where did you do your PhD, and what was your thesis about?
I was part of Shenoy Lab at Stanford University studying the functionality of one part of the brain in the preparation of arm movements. The objective was to be able to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of human neural prosthetics for paraplegic patients.
What are you up to now?
After my graduation from Stanford, I decided to join the Boston Consulting Group in Bangkok. I am currently working as a Consultant there now.
What made you go into consulting?
I was always interested in gaining more experience in business during graduate school because I wanted to see how technology can be transformed from an idea in a lab into a product in the real world. By working in consulting, I am exposed to various aspects of business ranging from new product development to organizational design. It’s one place where I can learn multiple skills in multiple industries at the same time without having to move my career around.
How has graduate school helped you out?
What graduate school has prepared me the most for consulting is the ability to problem-solve. It might sound really broad but it is true. Graduate students face different challenging problems every day in graduate school. We have to learn to be creative and adaptable to tackle new problems that emerge every day. This capability sounds easy on paper, but you need to practice in order to acquire the skill on a competent level.
Anything you would have done differently in your time as a graduate student?
No, I am happy with all the decisions I made. Mistakes were made but I learned greatly from them.
What advice would you give to yourself when you were finishing up your PhD?
There is one piece of advice from my advisor that has always stuck with me. He told me once that I should just focus on what I do rather than spread myself too thin. I think that's what helped me get to where I am today.
Any other parting wisdom or advice for our readers?
Don’t stop learning even after you graduate. I think that is one of the most refreshing part of post-grad life. There is so much more to learn.
Thank you Joe, and best of luck with your future endeavors!