When Purdue chemistry alumna Nancy Snyder changed
jobs, she stayed with the same employer but traded a
lab for a cubicle.
After 22 years in Eli Lilly and Company’s organic
chemistry laboratory, where she prepared novel compounds that were tested for therapeutic targets, Snyder
decided it was time to pursue a different job at the
pharmaceutical manufacturer. She was interested in
the opening because it allowed her to use her chemistry
background in a new way.
“I wanted to continue my career at Lilly and did
not consider leaving, so I obtained a position in legal
as a patent research consultant working with intellectual property and assisting in writing patents,” she
Snyder still gets to work with scientists and takes
pride in protecting the research of her colleagues ––
something she knows quite well after more than 20 years
in Lilly laboratories.
“I was blessed to have received a great education
at Purdue,” she says. “I continue to use what I learned
in the College of Science while interacting with my
many co-workers at Lilly.”
LAB TO LEGAL
HEALTH CARE TO MANUFACTURING
The original career goal of Billy Crosby, 2009 biological
sciences graduate, was to attend veterinary school.
Instead, he quickly found a job at Eli Lilly and Company
as a pathology technician, cutting and mounting tissues
and carefully filling jars with chemicals like formaldehyde. Using that experience and the flexible skill set he
had developed at Purdue, Crosby switched gears again
to accept a research position at Cummins Inc., a Fortune
500 corporation that designs, manufactures and distributes engines, filtration and power-generation products.
“I came to Cummins to work in one of the labs doing
research on after-treatment exhaust systems for truck
engines,” Crosby says. “It went well. Obviously, it was
a different field. Instead of researching tissues, I was
doing research on engines.”
Crosby’s science background has served him well
at Cummins, leading him to a promotion as a configuration
manager. “If the customer wants a fuel filter on the right
side of the engine instead of the left side, my job is to
make components work with that fuel filter,” he says.
After almost two years, Crosby is comfortable in
his new job — one that wasn’t on the map while he was
at Purdue. But he is happy to have had it come into view.
“I definitely enjoy the work,” Crosby says. “When
I interviewed for the position, I explained that I had a
biology background. They said they were not looking
for an engineer but for someone who had a scientific
way of thinking. Science majors are taught to think a
lot like engineers are taught to think. I use many of
the thought processes I learned at Purdue and in the
College of Science every day on my job at Cummins.”