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Nikhil Singh MBA’20: My Summer Internship at Thermo Fisher Scientific

Nikhil Singh is a supply chain MBA student at NC State, and is an SCRC Graduate Research Assistant (GRA). He is also president of the NC State Graduate Supply Chain Club, a McLauchlan Leadership Fellow, a Jenkins Career Management Peer Coach, and a member of several other campus and professional organizations. This summer, as an SCRC GRA, Nikhil will be working closely with UPS to develop innovative customer-facing service solutions. In this blog post, originally published by Nikhil on his LinkedIn page, he describes his experience working as a summer intern for Thermo Fisher Scientific, one of the SCRC’s newest partner companies.

by Nikhil Singh

This summer I interned with Thermo Fisher Scientific, as a procurement project manager for their Pharma Services Group (PSG), in Durham, North Carolina. Healthcare is in my blood, my mother was a doctor and worked in a hospital dedicated to serving the poor and disadvantaged in India. Thermo Fisher is a world leader in serving science, with revenues of more than $24 billion and approximately 70,000 employees globally. It is known for implementing world-class laboratory products, accelerating customers` life sciences research, solving complex analytical challenges, improving patient diagnostics, delivering medicines to market and increasing laboratory productivity.

My interest is in supply chain and procurement, and I had the opportunity to meet Jay and Amyelia from the procurement excellence team, at a corporate event hosted by NC State. Thermo Fisher`s goal of making the World Healthier, Cleaner, and Safer resonated with me. I did not waste time in putting in an application for their procurement project manager internship.

During the first few weeks into my internship, I had the opportunity to visit their drug manufacturing sites in Greenville and Highpoint, North Carolina. This visit provided me with real-world insight into how Contract Development and Manufacturing organizations (CDMO) work, and the specific challenges in the procurement and supply chain space. I also took the initiative to attend the World Pharma Week in Boston to learn more about advances in digital healthcare applications, pertaining to Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, AR/VR and Mobile Apps.


At work, I applied my learnings from the supply chain practicum class I took in the Spring, to my work. I was tasked with consolidating ERP data from all their manufacturing sites into a centralized repository for reporting and tracking inventory turns. This report was an input to optimize warehouse inventory and network design. This project helped me understand the importance of understanding key metrics vital to the business and the impact on revenue in case of disruption and delays. I got to learn new skills in Microsoft Access and SAP, which I seek to further through classes on these subjects this Fall. I was also responsible for analyzing spend across categories such as packaging and raw materials, to identify savings and business process improvement opportunities.

Diversity at the workplace is central to the ethos of Thermo Fisher. Being a global company, I had many opportunities to meet and work with people from all over the world, from the UK to Italy to Canada! The experience of working with cross-functional and diverse employees gave me valuable soft skills that will help me immensely when I re-enter the workplace.

I feel blessed and fortunate to have had such an amazing experience working for an organization that truly cares for its employees and works for creating a more sustainable planet. Coming from a developing country, I was welcomed with open arms and always encouraged to come up with innovative ideas from my experience in India. No wonder, Thermo Fisher is ranked in the Top 100 companies for internships in the country.

Finally, I would like to thank all those who supported and motivated me to excel, from the energetic CMC team at NC State , my manager Jay Anderson, mentor Professor Dr. Rob Handfield, the wonderful HR team in Durham, who made our experience seamless and impactful, and the many co-workers, whom I can proudly call as my friends now!