How to Take Your Expertise to the Marketplace, with Dr. Julius Edson – Ep #29

Have you ever felt like the opportunities to leverage your expertise and training were limited to only academia or government work? Were you ever exposed to the possibility of taking your expertise and training to the marketplace? Here to share his experience in academia and taking his skill set to the marketplace is Dr. Julius Edson.

Julius is the co-founder of Responsive Polymers Therapeutics (RPG) which aims to fill a void created by the lack of available effective antimicrobials. He is also a Business Development Associate at Zymo Research. Julius previously served as an Assistant Project Scientist at the University of California (UC), Irvine in nano-antibiotics. He has his PhD and Masters degrees from UC Irvine in Chemical and Bio-Medical Engineering and his Bachelor of Engineering and Chemical Engineering from City University of New York City College.

What You’ll Hear On This Episode of When Science Speaks

  • [1:05] Mark introduces his guest, Julius Edson.
  • [3:30] How Julius got involved with Graduate Professional Success (GPS) BioMed.
  • [8:30] Julius explains why he started his company, Responsive Polymers Therapeutics.
  • [14:15] What led Julius to his work with Zymo Research?
  • [16:20] How PhDs and Postdocs can prepare themselves for a career in industry.
  • [18:00] Why academia needs programs like GPS BioMed.
  • [21:00] Opportunites that have helped Julius in his career.

Connect with Julius Edson

Resources & People Mentioned

Setting an example

One of the many reasons we don’t see more postdocs taking their expertise to the marketplace is due to the lack of representation. In all of your years in academia, who was held up as the example of the “Successful” researcher? Most likely you’d say that professors and government researchers were held up as the example of “Success.” Following that line of logic, it’s fair to assume that most people would follow the path of least resistance and look to those pathways for career opportunities.

Bucking this trend, Dr. Julius Edson started working on his “Side hustle” creating his company, Responsive Polymers Therapeutics (RPT) while finishing his PhD at UC Irvine. While each person is different and brings their own unique experiences and skill sets to the table, it’s helpful to highlight individuals like Dr. Edson who forge their own path. You can learn more about the innovative work Julius and his team are engaged in by visiting the website to RPT located in the resources section.

How to prepare yourself for a career in the marketplace

Getting to see your peers succeed and carve out a path for themselves in the marketplace is great but where do you start if you want to head in that same direction? The challenge is not to prove your value in the marketplace – in many ways, it’s automatically assumed that you have value and expertise to bring to the table. The challenge is for PhDs and postdocs to get out there and communicate their work in a way that makes sense to business leaders.

Julius Edson explains that the best way to set yourself up for success in the marketplace is to hone your communication skills. If you’ve been around the When Science Speaks community for very long you know that this is a popular response by many leaders that Mark interviews. Dr. Edson encourages postdocs to take the time to really stretch their communications skills – a great way to do this is by interfacing with other departments and working to explain your field of study in a way that makes sense to them.

Julius has a lot more to say on the critical topic of taking your expertise to the marketplace, make sure to listen to his full conversation with Mark on this episode of When Science Speaks.

Connect With Mark and When Science Speaks

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