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I stood in awe when I learnt how the brain regulates the emotions, logics.

Created on: Aug 29, 2013 20:37 pm

Salwa Abdul Quyyum

M.S. student, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
University of Dhaka:DU

What are the pre-requisites of studying this subject? For example Architecture students should be able to draw?

The pre-requisite for studying biochemistry is the basic knowledge of biology and chemistry, since biochemistry is the study of biochemical processes at the cellular and molecular level in living systems. Specially, those who have clear concepts in chemistry, it is a perfect subject for them.

What interesting events shall students find while studying this subject?

The most interesting event is the poster presentation competition, in which you are supposed to make a poster of your research projects or any research article that you find interesting. These competitions take place during conferences and Bio-Olympiads.

Is the subject more mathematical/ more logical / more theoretical/ more practical?

It is more a subject of logics and practical works, even though you also have to be good at memorizing many facts and terms. The more you understand the logics and apply knowledge practically, the better you would be. Since it is basically a subject of research fields, reading habit is essential to keep yourself updated with the latest information and technologies related to Biochemistry.

If someone chooses this subject what goals can he/she reach?

I feel that if someone chooses this subject, he/she must go for higher studies. Ph.D is a must to become a researcher. I feel that Biochemistry is all about research. Researching about the mechanisms of living systems, that are the great creations of the Almighty Allah, is undescribably amazing. If one does not want to be a researcher, he/she can choose other fields.

What about the job sectors in this field? What can be the job security (in percentage) in this field? What is the average salary of person doing a responsible job in this field?

Research institutes are the best job sectors for biochemists. Those who are not interested in research can get job in hospitals and diagnostic centers to carry out tests like blood, urine, glucose analysis etc. Biochemists can join universities as teachers. Again, they also can go for sales, marketing and production of biotechnology related products. Biochemists are also employed in the quality control department and research and development department of pharmaceuticals.

What are the chances of higher studies in this field? What are core topics/ subjects for higher studies? Which countries are better for higher studies?

There are lots of opportunities for higher studies in this field. It is one of the most rising subjects in life science.

Biochemistry degree helps you to pursue higher degrees in many different fields such as genetics, physiology, dietetics, microbiology, immunology, enzymology, pharmacology, organic chemistry, marine science, aquatic, plant, animal, and medical biotechnology, toxicology, bioinformatics, haematology, medical science, bioinformatics, immunobiology, Nano biotechnology, drug discovery, molecular biology, plant biochemistry, and food biochemistry.

America, Canada and England are the best countries for higher studies in this field.

Please tell us about your struggles including all positives and negatives, while reaching this position today. (Precisely and briefly as an inspiration to newcomers)

Honestly, I was never fond of Chemistry and biology. After completing my H.S.C., I was relieved that I don’t have to study these subjects any more. Now, let’s skip the admission part and today I would say fortunately I got admitted to Biochemistry department. The first year was really hard to understand the subject and had to memorize a lot of facts. But the following years were really amazing, even though   I had to go through loads of hard works. The more I started to understand the implications of all the memorized facts, I started to love the subject. This subject is like a trip to the internal world of a body. It happened to me a few times that while studying I stood in awe of the unimaginable facts about living beings, like- how the brain regulates the emotions, logics; how millions of micro particles fight against bacteria, virus; how a single gene can be altered to cause a life threatening disease. I had my best experience during my thesis, even though it was full of frustration and constant lab works and reading articles.