The first semester of the Master’s Programme in Bioentrepreneurship (MBE) 2021/2023 ended officially this month. And to provide deeper insights into the learnings in the MBE programme, I am writing a review of the courses we took.
This is the second part of the blog post. In the first part, I provided a review of the first 3 courses within the MBE programme and if haven’t read it, you can catch up on it here.
Let us dive straight in and review the other 3 courses.
Project management (PM) was the fourth course of my programme. I looked forward to starting this course and absorbing as much as I could. PM principles are useful in almost every professional role and I was keen on adding these to my repertoire of skills.
We started by learning about the theoretical basis for project management. We also learned about the traditional methods of managing projects and the newer, agile methods.
There tends to be a conflict between these two PM ideologies, but we were taught to identify the opportunities to utilize both methods in a synergistic manner. We also had workshops with strong teamwork elements where theoretical knowledge was reinforced.
We also had a team assignment where we had to work in teams to plan and execute a project using the methods we had learnt. This was both fun and practical. And we also got a chance to reflect on both our learnings and contributions during the teamwork.
I can now with some degree of confidence that I have the foundational skills to plan and implement fairly complex projects.
Market analysis involves the quantitative and qualitative assessment of a market in order to determine if, how, and when a company or product should attempt to enter it.
This is quite important for the life sciences, a sector where bringing a product to market involves significant consumption of resources.
The pedagogical methods used in the MBE were utilized in teaching this course. The use of case studies of real-life situations helped to bring the learnings to life. And through a formalized reflection process, we were also able to appreciate how the knowledge gaps we had as students were also being bridged.
Another aspect of the course I really enjoyed was the guest lectures we had. Leading experts in the pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device industries gave interesting and insightful talks about how market analysis is done in the sector.
I thought the close interaction with the industry that we had on this course was invaluable and eye-opening.
Furthermore, we had a group project, where we had to identify the market needs and opportunities for selected healthcare needs. This allowed us to further apply knowledge gained to real problems.
Our assessment also included the analysis of a very interesting case study. Overall, this was a great way to be introduced to market analysis methods, and I enjoyed every bit of it.
Strategic Management Control
Popularly called SMC, strategic management control is the second course we had to take from KTH (Royal Institute of Technology). The course was a natural follow-on from the industrial management course.
SMC teaches how to create goals for a company, implement strategies to achieve them, and devise means of tracking the company’s progress.
The fundamental knowledge of how companies operate together with their financials already gained in the industrial management course was built upon.
There was also a group work where we had to select a company, analyze both its financial and non-financial performance and eventually make recommendations on the management control measures that can be taken to improve the company’s performance.
The course was both interesting and would certainly be useful for future managers and even those of us in the MBE class who go on to start their own companies.
The final exam of this course is a 10-hour, take-home paper that puts to test how much students have gained and how well learned principles can be applied in the management control of a given.
This highlights the fact that even though the courses are fun, they can also be demanding.
And that concludes the MBE courses for the first semester….
It has been fun and a lot of work. And I am looking forward to building on the foundation that we built in the first semester. I hope this has been insightful for you who might be interested in the programme. You can always reach out to me with any questions or clarifications.
Hi! I am Umar from Nigeria, currently studying for a master's in bioentrepreneurship. I like science and business, and my programme is right at the intersection of both. I also like football, Formula 1, cats, and hot chocolate. And here's a random fact - I can name the capital city of nearly all the countries on the planet. Feel free to put this to test if we run into each other. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.