- Student type: Domestic
- Degree type: Degree
- Graduation year: 1990
- Degree(s): Bachelor of Science
- Major(s): Pharmacology; Physiology
- Specialisation: BSc majoring in Pharmacology and Physiology
A self-confessed science geek, Daniel Bacon enrolled in a Monash Science degree without any particular career in mind. That changed after he listened to pharmaceutical company clinical scientists and sales representatives speak at a Monash pharmacology department vocational session. After graduating, Daniel took a job as a sales representative with Janssen, a Belgium-based research-focussed international drug company.
“From day one, it was lectures, textbooks, online learning and then exams,” Bacon said. Topics included sales, diseases, drugs, the company, its processes – and then the myriad legislation and regulations governing the bio-pharmaceutical sector. His science degree helped him understand only some of the material on diseases and their management. But it taught him learning habits that were vital in coping with the constant on-the-job testing.
Now as a senior business executive, Daniel still draws on skills learned as an undergraduate, such as the ability to “read” clinical research results. “In marketing you need to be able to understand if the evidence from a study equips you to make a claim for your product.”
An exciting career in pharmaceutical marketing followed with top industry players including Novartis. Over the years, Daniel has worked in diverse business areas on promoting products treating cancer, psychiatric diseases and stroke. Bacon’s advice to undergraduates with an eye on his sort of job, is to “talk to someone in the industry”, accumulate some experience in marketing and sales, and – in contrast to him – do honours or an MBA.