Master of Science in Biotechnology Program, UW-Madison

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Class of 2020

Photo Profiles for the Class of 2020

Malavika Abhineshababu
Malavika Abhineshababu
Class of 2020
Employer: University of Wisconsin - Madison
Title: Graduate Student

LinkedIn logo Malavika Abhineshababu

Malavika graduated with a Bachelor of Technology in Industrial Biotechnology at Anna University, in Chennai, India. The M.S. in Biotechnology Program fits in with Malavika's career pathway plans that started with two internships through Indian Institute of Science (IISc). Her first internship studied purification of broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) and immunogen design to develop potential vaccine against HIV-1. The second internship looked at three G:C base pairs in the anticodon stem of the initiator tRNA.

Malavika looks to put her molecular biology, biochemistry, and biophysics skills to work during her time in the M.S. in Biotechnology Program so that she can become a leader in biotechnology.

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Mugdha Bandiwadekar
Mugdha Bandiwadekar
Class of 2020
Employer: Pramuk HealthCare, Mumbai, India
Title: Technical Sales Executive

LinkedIn logo Mugdha Bandiwadekar

Mugdha received her Bachelor of Technology in Biotechnology at Dr. B.Y. Patil University, School of Biotechnology & Bioinformatics. Mugdha has had a keen eye on the food industry for some time, and runs a small bakery service. She also pursued an internship opportunity in food testing at MicroChem Siliker Pvt Ltd. It was during this internship, where Mugdha had decided to expand upon her laboratory knowledge and move into the operational side of the industry.

Mugdha is currently a technical sales executive for Pramuk HealthCare in Mumbai, India. The knowledge and experiences from the M.S. in Biotechnology Program will allow her to become a key contributor to the Biotechnology Industry.

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Joan Bunyi
Joan Bunyi
Class of 2020
Employer: Covance Laboratories
Title: Reporting Associate

LinkedIn logo Joan Bunyi

Joan received her bachelor's degree in biology from UW-Madison. She currently works at Covance Laboratories as a Reporting Associate. As a reporting associate, Joan works with the study direction group and produces reports for toxicology, ocular, and safety pharmacology studies. While a student, she also worked as a lab manager in the UW-Madison Structural Biology Lab and as a lead tutor for students ages 3-16.

Joan's goals include exploring the role of drug development and research within the biotechnology industry. She plans to use the knowledge gained from the program to make contributions to early drug development, becoming an ocular study director and being responsible for directing preclinical research and managing multiple projects.

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Cindy Chang
Cindy Chang
Class of 2020
Employer: NCKU Research and Development Foundation
Title: Senior Manager, Industrial and International Collaboration

LinkedIn logo Cindy Chang

Cindy received her bachelor's degree in accountancy from the National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan and her master's degree in accountancy from the University of Denver in Colorado. Cindy brings with her experiences as a senior manager for NCKU R&D Foundation in Taiwan where she was a leader of industrial collaborations with a number of global pharmaceutical stakeholders. Cindy is currently conducting a large animal study to mimic human chronic heart failure as part of a collaboration between the Cardiovascular Physiology Core Lab at UW-Madison and NCKU R&D Foundation in Taiwan.

Cindy's goal while in Madison is to integrate people, process, and technology to help transform the findings and research to the next levels within the biotechnology industry, including, but not limited to: IP protection, technology transfer, clinical trial initiation, and establishing start-up companies. She feels that the M.S. in Biotechnology Program will allow her to build upon her foundational scientific knowledge and confidence and ultimately strengthen her non-scientific abilities.

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Divya Datla
Divya Datla
Class of 2020
Employer: University of Wisconsin - Madison
Title: Graduate Student

LinkedIn logo Divya Datla

Divya graduated from GITAM University with a Bachelor of Technology degree in Biotechnology. While at the university, Divya interned at Macquarie University in Australia where she was involved in a testing for antibiotic resistance in flying foxes.

Divya’s goals include utilizing her knowledge and experience in effort to discover novel and viable technologies that will proved beneficial in the field of pharmaceutical biotechnology.

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Sarah Datza
Sarah Datza
Class of 2020
Employer: Eurofins Food Integrity & Innovation
Title: Associate Analytical Chemist III, Food Solutions

LinkedIn logo Sarah Datza

Sarah received her biology degree from Edgewood College and completed her capstone work researching the effects of chlorinated solvents on the tyrosine hydroxylase enzyme responsible for producing dopamine and the potential development of Parkinson's disease. She is currently working at Eurofins Laboratories as an Associate Analytical Chemist III on the Fat Soluble Vitamins Team. As part of the team, Sarah uses a number of platforms to extract food samples and analyze the fat soluble content. She has also been part of the First Responder Safety Team at Eurofins, which has provided an opportunity to find out more about all of the different departments within Eurofins.

Sarah plans expand her science knowledge and explore the business and regulatory aspects of the Biotechnology industry while in the M.S. in Biotechnology Program so that she can move up the career ladder and take on a management role within Eurofins.

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Karali Fedor
Karali Fedor
Class of 2020
Employer: Covance Laboratories
Title: Senior Research Analyst

LinkedIn logo Karali Fedor

Karali received her degree in Psychology from UW-LaCrosse where, as part of her undergraduate research, she collected and analyzed zooplankton samples to track microorganism growth and quantities. Karali currently works as a Senior Research Analyst in the Early Drug Development Division at Covance Laboratories. Her role within the Quantitative Whole Body Autoradiography sector allows her to not only perform a variety of analyses from a number of different platforms, but also develop skills in writing reports and discussing findings with study directors.

Karali knows that the M.S. in Biotechnology Program will allow her to explore and hone her knowledge in Early Drug Discovery, specifically in metabolomics and ultimately become a Study Director at Covance.

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Kristy Gargulak
Kristy Gargulak
Class of 2020
Employer: Medical College of Wisconsin
Title: QA/QC Technician

LinkedIn logo Kristy Gargulak

Kristy graduated from The Ohio State University with a degree in Molecular Genetics and currently works as a Quality Assurance/Quality Control Technician at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Her work focuses on research and development relating to QA/QC of cGMP and GLP lentiviral vector batches.

Kristy believes that the M.S. in Biotechnology Program will allow her to develop her leadership skills so that she can apply the knowledge honed in science, business, and the law as she grows into a director role within a QA/QC department.

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Tyler Gonzales
Tyler Gonzales
Class of 2020
Employer: Illumina
Title: Research Associate 2

LinkedIn logo Tyler Gonzales

Tyler received a biology degree and chemistry minor from UW-Eau Claire. He currently works at Illumina as a Research Associate 2 after spending three years at PPD as an Associate Scientist. While at PPD, he was part of a team that led a product through the entire new drug application process. This product (Bevespi Aerosphere) went on to receive FDA approval. Tyler moved on to Illumina where he has been part of the protein manufacturing team, purifying enzymes for over two years.

Tyler knows that he will be able to continue growing his skills through the M.S. in Biotechnology Program so that he can stay on top of the most current discoveries and development. These skills will allow him to become a leader within an industry that continues to be a driving catalyst for applied uses of technology discoveries.

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Emily Hogoboom
Emily Hogoboom
Class of 2020
Employer: Covance Laboratories
Title: Pathology Study Technician II

LinkedIn logo Emily Hogoboom

Emily graduated from Marquette University with a degree in Biomedical Sciences. She has worked for the past year at Covance Laboratories as a Pathology Study Technician II, where she processes tissue samples for various clinical studies. Prior to joining Covance, she worked as Certified Nursing Assistant at two patient care and rehabilitation nursing centers.

Emily seeks a greater understanding of the increasing overlap between clinical patient care and the field of biotechnology as it relates to human health and therapeutic product development. Her immediate goal is to develop cross-functional knowledge of biotechnology as it serves the healthcare industry, with the potential long term goal of becoming a doctor or physician assistant.

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Taylor Kurtzweil
Taylor Kurtzweil
Class of 2020
Employer: University of Wisconsin - Madison
Title: Research Specialist

LinkedIn logo Taylor Kurtzweil

Taylor is a recent graduate from UW-Madison with a degree in Psychology and is currently employed as a Research Assistant in the Landick Laboratory. Her current project works with the Small Molecule Screening Facility to identify new Mycobacterium tuberculosis RNA polymerase inhibitors. It was her work at Covance Laboratories as a Sample Coordinator that allowed Taylor to understand how a contract research organization works, and where she was also introduced to patent law.

Taylor plans to blend the laboratory, business, and law curriculum within the M.S. in Biotechnology Program so that she can utilize her passion of scientific writing and analysis as she prepares to become a patent attorney.

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Ethan McLeod
Ethan McLeod
Class of 2020
Employer: FUJIFILM - Cellular Dynamics Incorporated
Title: Research Specialist

LinkedIn logo Ethan McLeod

Ethan graduated from UW-Madison with a degree in genetics and double minors in computer science and stem cell studies. During his undergraduate coursework, Ethan also worked for Dr. Slukvin, as well as Gene Uenishi's laboratories. It was here where he was able to ask many questions and learn stem cell differentiation techniques. He currently is a Research Specialist for FUJIFILM-Cellular Dynamics, Inc., where he is responsible for all in vivo mouse testing and mouse maintenance.

Ethan's ultimate goal is to start his own company. He believes that the M.S. in Biotechnology Program and the uniquely tailored biotechnology industry courses of science, business, and the law will be integral to jump starting his career aspirations.

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Adrian Mikol
Adrian Mikol
Class of 2020
Employer: Catalent Pharma Solutions
Title: Process & Cleaning Validation Specialist

LinkedIn logo Adrian Mikol

Adrian received her degree in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering with a Biomolecular Sciences Concentration from North Carolina State University. She currently is a QA Validation Specialist at Catalent Pharma Solutions where she works closely with three different teams (process development, manufacturing sciences, and production) all working together to develop a process and cleaning validation program for the site.

Adrian looks forward to exploring the education opportunities within the M.S. in Biotechnology Program so that she can develop her technical skills in the industry; expand her leadership skills; and build upon the business and law aspects so that she can continue to provide unique perspectives needed to be an active contributor and collaborator within the biotechnology industry.

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Nandini Nallappan
Nandini Nallappan
Class of 2020
Employer: University of Wisconsin - Madison
Title: Graduate Student

LinkedIn logo Nandini Nallappan

Nandini graduated from SRM Institute of Science and Technology with a Bachelor of Technology degree in Genetic Engineering. Her research projects included working on drug development and screening of KCa3.1 channel blocker under Dr. Yanxia for NMRC. She was also able to work on projects in collaboration with the Singapore Institute of Immunology.

Nandini believes that the M.S. in Biotechnology will allow her to build upon her current knowledge and develop more skills on the business side of the industry. In this way, she will be able to become a competitive leader within the industry.

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Shrinidhi Navale
Shrinidhi Navale
Class of 2020
Employer: University of Wisconsin - Madison
Title: Graduate Student

LinkedIn logo Shrinidhi Navale

Shrinidhi recently received her Bachelor of Engineering in Biotechnology degree from Visvesvaray Technology University Belgaum, in India after studying at KLE Technological University (previously B.V. Bhoomaraddi College of Engineering and Technology). As part of her undergraduate program, Shrinidhi participated in several internships and academic projects. These include working at SDM Institute of Medical Sciences and Hospital and the Central Research Institute (CRI) in Kasauli, Himachalpradesh.

Shrinidhi is looking forward to exploring the theoretical and applied nature of the M.S. in Biotechnology Program. Her goal is to expand her knowledge in regulatory affairs and drug discovery so that she can align her knowledge and skills in order to become a productive biotechnology leader.

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Austin Oliphant
Austin Oliphant
Class of 2020
Employer: Exact Sciences
Title: Senior Research Associate I

LinkedIn logo Austin Oliphant

Austin received dual Bachelor of Arts degrees in Biochemistry and Spanish from the University of Tampa. He currently is working at Exact Sciences as a Senior Research Associate I where he is primarily involved in developing molecular-based assays, detecting targets of interest from samples of liquid biopsy origin and identifying process improvements and efficiencies. As a collaborator, Austin is also involved in training and mentoring junior and incoming scientists on complex technologies.

Austin's goal is to become a critical leader focused on scientific and business strategies within the biotechnology industry. He knows that the M.S. in Biotechnology Program will allow him to explore how to successfully meet and solve the complex scientific, business, and legal challenges that the biotechnology sector faces every day.

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Nikhil Pereira
Nikhil Pereira
Class of 2020
Employer: Eurofins Scientific
Title: Microbiologist

LinkedIn logo Nikhil Pereira

Nikhil graduated from UW-Madison with a bachelor's degree in microbiology. He currently works at Covance as a microbiologist where he sets up samples for clients for performing diagnostics, reporting on the data and codifying pathologenic information. Recently, Nikhil added the role of programming the LIMS system, which has allowed him to learn coding, as well as improve the lab's efficiently.

Nikhil expects to expand his functional knowledge of biotechnology and utilize his education within the M.S. in Biotechnology Program to eventually start his own company. He is looking forward to working with all of his fellow classmates to practice learning what it takes to create and market technologies that add value to human life.

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Daniel Pirsch
Daniel Pirsch
Class of 2020
Employer: Catalent Pharma Solutions
Title: Assistant Scientist

LinkedIn logo Daniel Pirsch

Daniel received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology at the University of Minnesota and has followed that up with two certificates in biotechnology and stem cell technologies. He currently works at Catalent as an Assistant Scientist in Upstream Process Development. Prior to his work at Catalent, Daniel worked in R&D at Platypus Technologies.

Daniel is focused on continuing his contribution to provide new knowledge and technologies to the biotechnology industry. He expects the M.S. in Biotechnology Program to help him blend his knowledge of the skills required in operations and regulations. He also looks forward to expanding his network of peers, faculty, and alumni, and to playing a bigger role in a larger scientific community.

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Jacqueline Rodriguez
Jacqueline Rodriguez
Class of 2020
Employer: Aldevron
Title: Customer Relations Manager, Protein Services

LinkedIn logo Jacqueline Rodriguez

Jacqueline graduated from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez with a Bachelor's degree in Biology. She began the M.S. in Biotechnology Program as a Quality Assurance Laboratory Technician at Bioriginal.

During prior work at a dairy facility, she was introduced to small protein purification company (later acquired by Bioriginal) that produced specialty products for domestic and international infant formula companies. Interested in the process of biomanufacturing, Jacqueline joined the company as a Quality Assurance Laboratory Technician where she designed and conducted quality control experiments for the infant formula products.

Building on her regulatory and operational experience, Jacqueline pursued employment at Aldevron (Madison, WI site), a company specializing in custom protein characterization, development and manufacturing. She is currently employed as a Customer Relations Manager for Aldevron's Protein Services division.

Jacqueline believes the M.S. in Biotechnology Program has enabled her to identify and understand vital trends within the biotechnology industry, and more importantly, how they impact customer needs.

As a student and working professional, she continues to expand her industry expertise while becoming a key contributor to her employer's commercial success.

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Tanner Ruechel
Tanner Ruechel
Class of 2020
Employer: Promega Corporation
Title: Production Scientist

LinkedIn logo Tanner Ruechel

Tanner graduated with a degree in Biology with a Molecular and Genetics Emphasis at UW-Platteville. He also received a post-baccalaureate certificate in Biotechnology at Madison College. Currently, Tanner is working at Promega as a Production Scientist II, where he is responsible for the manufacturing and quality control of over 100 quality products.

As a production scientist, Tanner's goals are to strengthen his background in the legal, regulatory, and marketing aspects of launching a product. The M.S. in Biotechnology Program will enhance his communication skills through regular team interaction and dive into innovative ways to improve upon existing processes and product lines.

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Malika Shertay
Malika Shertay
Class of 2020

LinkedIn logo Malika Shertay

Malika Shertay (B.S., Biotechnology, Al- Farabi Kazakh National University) worked as a junior researcher at M.A. Aitkhozhin Institute of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry in Kazakhstan. While working in the lab she took part in a project studying the early diagnosis of breast cancer and its prognostication through XPD gene mutations and the ethnogenesis of the Kazakh people. She also worked as a biology tutor for the "Vash repetitor" tutoring company.

The M.S in Biotechnology program gives her a great opportunity to extend her knowledge of life science product development, such as molecular technologies and drug development, as well as to explore deeply the biotechnology industry. She is eager to explore approaches to creating cutting-edge biotechnology products. She also looks forward to learning how to implement business and commercialization practices in the field of biotechnology in an effort to make a profound contribution to the world of science.

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Adithi Thangaraju
Adithi Thangaraju
Class of 2020
Employer: University of Wisconsin - Madison
Title: Graduate Student

LinkedIn logo Adithi Thangaraju

Adithi is a recent graduate of Shiv Nadar University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biotechnology. As an undergraduate, Adithi was a research intern for the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology in India, where she was part of a team that studied the structure and functional relationship of the enzyme Mycobacterium tuberculosis FACL13.

Through her experience with the M.S. in Biotechnology Program, she expects to gain further knowledge and experience so that she can continue to blend the laboratory and professional leadership workspaces in the biotechnology industry.

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Class of 2020 Schedule

Fall 2018 | Spring 2019
Fall 2019 | Spring 2020

Class of 2021 Schedule

Fall 2019 | Spring 2020
Fall 2020 | Spring 2021

Class of 2022 Schedule

Fall 2020 | Spring 2021
Fall 2021 | Spring 2022

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