Hey Denise, tell us a little bit about yourself.
I'm a new grad from Carnegie Mellon who just started her first job! Currently based in the DMV area where I was born and raised, and in my free time I like to do Chloe Ting workouts over zoom with friends, declutter by selling items on Mercari/Poshmark, and watch movies (anything but horror). Also proud to be Taiwanese-American :)
Can you tell us what you do as a Research Analyst for those who are unfamiliar?
As a Research Analyst in the Syndicated Healthcare sector of my company, I help analyze data gathered from physician studies that are later presented to clients. I also assist with a Patient Community that provides a platform for patients to give us direct feedback on their treatment and overall well-being.
How did you decide to pursue your specific career? What pivotal moments pushed you to where you are now?
I started college as a pre-med biology major, with hopes of becoming an optometrist, but that quickly turned out to be the wrong path for me. I switched to a more statistics and business related major and did some behavioral science research for a professor. When I came across this job opportunity, I thought it was the perfect way to apply the research I had done while also continuing my interest in healthcare. Even though I'm not a doctor, working in this industry kind of feels like things came full circle. I've enjoyed my time so far and I'm looking forward to where this will take me!
Any advice on how to stand out and get hired for those starting off?
As a new grad, I remember the struggles of job search all too well. No advice from upperclassmen could have prepared me for the arduous months of applications, interviews, and not to mention questions from, what seemed like, everybody on what I was doing after college.
The first piece of advice I would give is to stay organized to reduce stress. Keep a spreadsheet of companies you've applied to and the statuses of those applications - having this will prevent scrambling to remember where you've already sent in your resume or wonder if you're still being considered for company X.
Secondly, even if you have multiple interviews lined up or "back ups" in mind, take every interview seriously. Nothing is every guaranteed so do your best every time! Easier said than done because the whole process does get exhausting and emotionally draining, but that brings me to my last point.
Pace yourself to avoid burnout. As nice as it is to lock down a job in the fall, there are always more opportunities that open up in the spring. Be kind and patient with yourself - you've worked this hard, any company would be lucky to have you :) you deserve success and it will come eventually.
3 Character traits that would make someone excel in your field
Attention to detail, willingness to speak up and contribute ideas, empathy
Most difficult thing about your job?
Can't speak too much on this part because I've only just started, but I'd say keeping track of the different terms and acronyms that are part of the company jargon - it will all become familiar with time!
What would you like to say to your younger self?
Everything's going to work out fine.
Be less self conscious, you have nothing to worry about.
Stop parting your hair in the middle.
Try to understand and apologize to Dad, he means well.
Eyeliner is a game changer.
Let go of friendships that don't support you back.
Boys aren't everything.
Love yourself, take care of yourself, and learn to enjoy spending time alone.
Best advice you've received/heard?
From Anna Akana - no one's going to get that job or ask out that person for you. If there's something you want, be proactive! Don't be a bystander and let life pass you by.
Any last thoughts, advice, or recommendations for someone who wants to learn more about being a Research Analyst?
Do what you're interested in and not what you think other people want you to do. If there's something else that you're better at and makes you happier, go for it! Don't ignore that feeling of wanting change.