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by Kandace Kohr
Like many Dickinson students, Muhammad Burhan ’21 (mathematics, computer science and pre-health) hit the ground running in fall 2019, packing his schedule with internships, career development opportunities and student-faculty research, in addition to his course load and extracurriculars. He also managed to study abroad through the Dickinson in England program before heading off to the New York City program. When the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic hit and uprooted his plans, it didn’t take long for him to rebound, and he found that he was able to adapt to these new circumstances while securing a summer internship at Horizon Therapeutics, an Ireland-based pharmaceutical company.
Burhan has had seven internships as a Dickinsonian, so he knows well the plentiful opportunities available for students to explore a career or field that interests them. While many students find opportunities through Dickinson’s Center for Advising, Internship & Lifelong Career Development, faculty or off-campus job boards, students can also take advantage of Alumnifire, which is how Burhan met alum and Horizon's Area Sales Director Dominick Cerminaro ’00.
"[Dominick] had posted the internship listing, so I connected with him directly, knowing he was a Dickinson alum,” says Burhan. “He reviewed my application and recommended me to the recruiting team, which led to me getting an interview, so he was very helpful.”
Cerminaro reflects on the support he received at Dickinson as a student, and now that he's an alum, he plans to provide that same support to others. “I will never forget what my Dickinson family did to support me when I encountered challenges," he says. "Giving back is important to me. And one way to do that has been helping current Dickinson students learn more about my industry through internships and externships.”
Burhan will join the team as a product strategy and analytics intern, a position in which he will be analyzing pharmaceutical data and providing insights and projections for how to move forward. Despite having to relocate from England to New York to Pakistan all in less than a year, Burhan was able to expertly navigate the hurdles created by the COVID-19 outbreak. He feels confident that he can seamlessly engage with the team at his internship site in Chicago via remote technology as well as keep in touch with Cerminaro and the recruiting team at Horizon.
Horizon focuses on the rebranding, repackaging and repricing of specialty drugs to be sold in the U.S. Customer service and care remain at the core of their mission, and they emphasize the importance of community service, which is one of the aspects of the internship that excites Burhan the most.
“The medicine that Horizon provides helps patients and communities in the U.S. and Ireland, so I will be analyzing how our products impact those communities and individually in our patients’ lives," he says. "It’s one of the main reasons I took the internship with this company because I am interested in public health and community service, and this internship really highlights those two aspects.”
Published May 12, 2020