Why Pharmaceutical Students Are Frustrated? How to resolve their problems? How can they look forward to their career?


What is Pharmaceuticals?

The Pharmaceutical Sciences is the study of drug formulation, disposition, delivery and clinical response. Basically, it is the conversion of a drug into a medicine to be used by patients in an effective and most importantly in a safe manner. Raw materials are of no use to patients and hence this industry converts them to a dosage design. Pharmaceutical Sciences include Pharmaceutical Technology, Pharmaceutics, Biopharmaceutics, Pharmacokinetics, Pharmaceutical/Medicinal Chemistry, Computational Chemistry and Molecular Drug Design, Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry, Pharmacology, Pharmaceutical Analysis, Pharmacy Practice, Clinical and Hospital Pharmacy, Cell Biology, Genomics and Proteomics, Pharmacogenomics, Bioinformatics and Biotechnology of Pharmaceutical Interest. In pharmaceutics sciences, students gain a cognizance of medications, their origins, chemical properties, biological results and their therapeutic uses.


Why Pharmaceutical Students Are Frustrated?

Initial interest, later irked

In the beginning, science students find pharmaceuticals as a great option to take forward their career with. But as time passes by, they usually get frustrated with this field. People are not only unaware of the new research in their domain but also uninformed about the policies that shape their essential practice.

Less job openings

This field is truly entrancing however numerous students who picked pharmaceutical as a career are in lack of good jobs. Downsizing of organizations because of recession may be one reasons. Surplus supply of pharma students and in contrast the less demand from the companies. There are lack of innovations and failure to build a new market. This has aggravated the frustration and dissatisfaction of pharmaceutical students.

Narrow perspective and lack of awareness

Generally, a degree in pharmaceuticals is associated with a career for lifelong as a chemist, but this has changed now. Pharmaceuticals provide a vast muster of career choices for the students. It has stepped outside labs and study rooms and gone further into many distinct fields. However, the limited perspective and career choices are giving frustration to huge number of pharmaceutical students making them regret their career choices. Students these days have very less knowledge of fields which are related to pharmaceutics. But pharmaceutics students remain vexed as they are unaware of the many distinct fields of career they can opt for in their domain.

Hindrance of common skills in people

No organization would want to employ same kind of people in their company. Repeated skills are barring them to grow in society. There is a desperate need of diversity anywhere and everywhere. The skills should be those which stand out being truly unique. Companies favour those who have added skills in them. Apart from the deep core study of pharmaceuticals, students should learn and practice communication skills. They fail in participating in educational sessions, counselling and interviewing.

Insufficient job skills

Certain skills are needed to enter any good organization while pharmaceutics students are lacking these kind of job skills. They are more or less bankrupt of these or have them in quite low amount. People say that the job market is getting soaked, and that even after graduation people do not have jobs. Most of the people of the country who have taken loans for pursuing pharmaceutical sciences are unable to repay debts. Most of the frustration is coming from there as well.

Extended amount of waiting

A lot of frustration is coming from the very demanding behaviour of the experiments involved. Experiments takes lots of time, say 4 years and if being patient for those number of years result in the experiment failure, it will take irritation and frustration to level of heights. This is the nature of pharmaceuticals which most people can not tolerate.

Lack of practical approach

There are some people of pharmaceuticals who reject a small job for they aim to achieve higher positions. But they can only start their career from the bottom of the ladder if they want to reach to the top. Someone cannot directly become a product manager. Everyone has to start from the initial point as they are inexperienced. Reaching to an extremely high position will take years of dedication and hardwork. It’s simple, those people who do not approach their career practically will never be able to achieve their desired result.


What to do to lessen the frustration and attain success?

Boon to society

Pharmaceutical is a field where people’s work renders benefit to the society. However, this aspect is usually ignored. It has contributed to people’s ameliorated health and elongated life.


Strive gaining experience

Students should participate in collective work with healthcare providers. Pharmacy students should aim to have an internship where they may have privilege to work in emergency rooms and hospitals. This way they can make themselves educated about the way their domain is run. They should contact a lecturer and propose to do their field related work in their laboratory. There are professional organizations as well, they can be contacted to look into placements in research labs. Students should also search on the internet about sandwich placements and get into them. They can also volunteer to work in a pharmacy.


Develop skills

Pharmaceutics students should learn to develop skills like Communication, complex data designing, retrieving and interpreting. Decision making skills, teamwork and time management should also be built. They should learn to use their own initiative, and build critical analytical difficulty resolving abilities.


Know your distinct opportunities

  • Over the years pharmaceutical scientists have played a crucial role in discovering and developing innovative drugs that save thousands of people’s lives and improve the quality of life for many.
  • Pharmaceutical scientists can pursue a variety of jobs.This domain open a number of career routes like teaching where people can become lecturers and can side by side do their research in their field and aim to become a scientists.
  • They can be employed by pharmaceutical companies as researchers at national laboratories such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
  • He/she can become a quality assurance health manager where they can play an important role in the severe events of medication, circulate awareness, suggesting prevention ways for example about AIDS. Marketing and Sales is another field where students of pharmaceutics can enter and make their career.
  • There are some people who have a warm marketable personality and great communication skills, such people can become representatives of medical sales as they have a plus point of drug related knowledge.
  • If the person has skills in computers, he/she can opt for manager of databases. Here the date would be processed according to the particular software developed for that purpose.
  • Pharmaceutical also gives you the opportunity of going in Food and Drug Administration (FDA). They can also go in clinical trials which are performed on healthy humans.
  • Intellectual Property Rights specifically in Pharma- field which is related with protection of inventions like drug molecules or drug formulations. Students also have an opportunity to look to their domain by relating it to IPR firm where they can become patent analyst ,patent agent, patent engineer, patent illustrator and after a certain time period they can have the privilege of climbing the top stair and become IP manager.
  • Students should have a practical approach to their career and should be open to new ideas and opportunities. They should take up a job which comes their way on the first hand and not be very demanding. Being fully aware of the related fields and pursuing the best, suiting their interest, talents and scope should be their approach to career.


Deal with stretched time of experiments

Experiments take lots of time, rather than waiting for the result and getting stressed about the failure, one should work side by side on a different job to earn and acquire stability like I mentioned above a teaching job or data analysing and managing or anything suiting their ability and interest. Broadening options will always provide with vast ways of security and reduce or maybe vanish the frustration pharmaceutical students are experiencing.


How can they look forward to their career?

The career prospects of pharmaceutical in IPR

After 2005, pharma product and process patents are permissible in India. Post 2005 demand for patent professionals is on rise. With many blockbuster drugs patent expiring in 2015, patent pharma industry is bound to grow at higher rate. Even generic market for drugs in India is growing. According to recent article published in Economic Times on 13 October 2011, all branded drugs of worth $3 billion dollars are protected under patents. In such scenario patent jobs in pharma sector is on rise.


Working profile in industry


Patent Pharma Professionals have wide range of job responsibilities-

  • To ensure the IP compliance in the market for which drug is being developed.
  • To ensure that business risk is minimized in terms of possible patent infringement.
  • To provide IP protection for in house products/ process developed
  • To create/ provide opportunity for business / new product by using design around strategies
  • To identify new product opportunities by performing patent landscape or state of art studies.

Skills required for Patent Pharma Professionals

  • Good understanding of patent and generic drug laws of countries across the world
  • Practical handling on various patent software – STN, Drugbank, USPTO, Espacenet, PCT search etc.
  • Practical Understanding of Patent filing and prosecution

Good Salary

Salary depends on experience and designation. It ranges from 3 lac per annum for entry level profile as patent associate , 8 lac for senior associate or registered patent agent  to 12 lac per annum  for patent managers.

Companies which recruit Pharma Patent Professionals

The good news is that Generally all companies have IPR Department. For example – Zydus Cipla, Ranbaxy, Glenmark Pharma,Lupin, Piramal Life Sciences, Sun Pharma, Wockhardt and many more.