How alumni boosted career success by complementing their passion with an MBA.
In the pharmaceutical industry, everything is about the patient.
For Peter Fendt, PharmD/MBA ’16, it was the experiences of his family and friends who were affected by disease that inspired him to find opportunities to impact the development of new medicines.
“Through personal experiences, and speaking with individuals in the pharmaceutical industry, I was motivated to pursue a career where I could help patients on a global scale and address medical conditions where patients do not currently have sufficient therapeutic options available to them,” he says.
After graduating from UB’s PharmD/MBA program, Fendt completed a postdoc fellowship through Rutgers University and went to work for Celgene, a global biopharmaceutical company. Today, he serves as senior manager of global market insights, monitoring industry competitors, data readouts and the progress of on-going clinical trials, particularly for multiple myeloma therapies.
Recently, he has taken the lead on a global market research plan for a new cancer therapy that’s under development and being prepared for commercialization, requiring him to collaborate with partners worldwide, gather perspectives from physicians, caregivers and patients, and draw on his dual skill sets.
“One of the most valuable things about the dual PharmD/MBA program at UB is how the experiences complement each other,” Fendt says. “The MBA taught me how to apply technical knowledge and cross-functional teamwork in the commercial side of the business, while pharmacy practice helped me understand how treatments impact patients on an emotional level. Maintaining that patient focus, and not looking at the science in isolation, is critical.”
In the future, Fendt hopes to capitalize on the diverse opportunities the industry offers for professional growth—putting to use the mindset he developed through LeaderCORE™, a two-year personal and professional development certification program for UB MBAs.
“LeaderCORE added a different lens to how I view my interactions,” Fendt says. “The focus on self-reflection and developing emotional intelligence has allowed me to better operate within my teams and embrace change as a potential catalyst for progress.”
Written by Matthew Biddle, this story originally appeared as part of the cover feature in the autumn 2019 issue of Buffalo Business.