Putting the 'Tech' in Biotech: Divya Kandukuri

Innovative Purification Technologies Pty Ltd (IPT)

Masters in Biotechnology (Advanced) (Nano-Biotechnology) 2008

Minimum $38,000
Maximum $62,000
Average $50,000 p.a.

MASTERS in Biotechnology graduate Divya Sarma Kandukuri’s research is paving the way for novel applications in the groundbreaking field of biopharmaceuticals.

Divya, who moved from India to Australia to study at UQ in 2006, is now a research assistant at Innovative Purification Technologies Pty Ltd (IPT), a company based at Australian Technology Park in inner-city Sydney.

In her role, Divya uses cutting-edge biotechnology techniques to aid IPT in its quest to develop and commercialise novel separation technologies for biologically active macromolecules, such as DNA, RNA, proteins and nucleic acids.

Divya, originally from the city Hyderabad in India, said her challenging yet rewarding position would not have opened up to her without her postgraduate qualifications from UQ.

"It was at UQ that I could acquire hands-on experience and expertise in these techniques," she says.

"I truly believe that I got the job because my employers were impressed by the amount of extensive and varied work I had done at UQ".

"My employers also knew that UQ graduates are renowned for their skills and ability."

Divya says she originally chose UQ because she was "impressed" with the Masters in Biotechnology (Advanced) course structure.

"The course was designed so as to maintain the fine balance between understanding the fundamentals and knowing the latest advancements in the biotechnology field."

Australia’s reputation was another factor that drew her to study here.

"The primary reason was there is a lot of scope for science professionals in Australia, and I knew that I could make my mark in this field," she says.

"Secondly, there is a perception back home in India that Australia is a very friendly, very laid back and very safe country which respects all cultures and races."

Despite being from a non-English speaking background, Divya now has extensive English language skills – which she also attributes to her time at UQ.

"UQ has played a big role in improving and fine-tuning my speaking and writing skills," Divya says.

"I strongly believe that communicating is an essential key to anyone’s life, and to make strides in one’s profession one needs to communicate effectively."