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Thermo Fisher comes to Behrend


Brendan Derry, Business Editor

This past week, Behrend welcomed representatives from Thermo Fisher Scientific to talk to students about their work experience and upcoming opportunities. Behrend alumni, Kiley Ransbury and Sara Sperrazza, both IBE majors gave their presentation to multiple classes full of business and engineering students in the hopes that students would learn what life after graduation can be like and the possibilities that exist. 

Thermo Fisher is such a large entity that they’re size is actually rather difficult to gauge. According to a few employees, this is due to the company buying up assets quickly and expanding. This is good news for Behrend students from out of town because there could be a Thermo Fisher location much closer than their main office in Massachusetts. As an organization, they primarily focus on developing biotechnical products on a business-to-business level, which means that, to many, their name isn’t as recognizable to the public as GE for example. Because of this, many students were unaware that they offered a significant number of positions and the track record with Behrend graduates keeps bringing them back. This leads to Kiley and Sara coming back to tell students about their company’s programs, namely their Operations Leadership Development Program. It was designed as an all-encompassing two-year program specifically or graduating seniors to begin their career track. It gives those students the ability to see multiple departments within the company while training to give them a better understanding of what their work will look like and how employees work together across a large company. Based on the reactions of attendees, these presentations can be extremely beneficial to students who plan ahead. One student, Jenny Krull gave her thoughts on their Development Program, “I think hearing about the programs was helpful…It would be really interesting to see four different sides of the company before starting.” Although this specific program is meant to be the entry track for graduates, Kiley did clarify that Thermo Fisher can accept interns of any year.

Programs like this are a tremendous way for students to gain valuable experience in their chosen industry while getting paid and finishing their education. While speaking with Kiley, she made it clear that Behrend absolutely prepared her for her job with Thermo Fisher. During their presentation, it was explained that the reason they keep coming back is because Behrend has some unique majors like IBE and a course load that gives students experience with both engineering and business which matches the criteria for many jobs today. The narrative has been repeated at career fairs and presentations that companies are having a more difficult time finding well rounded students that have a good grasp on subjects other than their specific major. Kiley said that this mixture of material was incredibly helpful in obtaining and learning her job and those soft skills, like presenting are vital to continued success. After getting into her position with Thermo Fisher, Kiley said she was prepared with no real shocks and has been treated very well. The market for skilled workers is competitive and your skills are valuable. Kiley mentioned one great benefit of her position and that is their Tuition Assistance Program to get through graduate school. These things aren’t uncommon but if it’s important to ensure you know your worth.