The Faces Of NGC

An interview with Sadhna Sahani

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Sadhna Sahani helps organizing the NGC meetings; she recently finished her PhD in AG Nitsch. In this interview, she revealed some facets of her personality and her interest for neuroscience.

How did you choose your PhD position?
After a master in neuroscience, I wanted to pursue my passion for the subject by a PhD and found an advertisement for a PhD position on the Nature jobs website. After two Skype interviews, I visited the host laboratory. I started working as an Intern for three months to evaluate the project, which subsequently led to a PhD position.
During my search for a PhD position, I did not restrict myself to one stream of neuroscience and rather freely explored new horizons. Additionally, I wanted to integrate more technical skills from those that I had employed previously - molecular and behavior methods. I was more interested in learning in vivo methodologies to explore neuronal networks.

What do you like about neuroscience?
I have a fascination for the functioning of neuronal networks. This attraction started during my bachelors when I was working as a summer intern in the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India in the department of Transplant Immunology and Immunogenetics. During this time, I got to spend a week in a neuroscience laboratory which was involved in studying molecular mechanisms of neurodegenerative disorders. I would see patients with neurological disabilities which was somehow disturbing but at the same time it piqued my curiosity towards brain functioning. Therefore, I chose to do a Masters in Neuroscience and learnt the basics, which further reinforced my fascination.

What do you like to do when you are not in the lab?
I am a spiritual person, so I meditate about 30-40 minutes every morning. I practice gym and yoga and like to travel with my husband to explore other cities/ countries and cultures.

What is your long-term goal?
I am open to both academic and non-academic positions. During my PhD, I felt a lot of stress in academia, especially in regard to getting high impact publications. I am interested to teach basics of neuroscience, so I would rather prefer teaching compared to managing a research laboratory.
If I leave academia, which is a high possibility, I would like to reach a managerial position in a Biotech or Pharma company and work to help people achieve good healthcare.

Why did you choose to join NGC and the organizing committee?
NGC is a good opportunity to organize knowledge sharing sessions, organized by and for the students. The position of meeting organizer helped me increase my management and communication skills. The NGC is a valuable platform to make connections inside and outside academia.

Written by Isabelle Arnoux; Edited by Radhika Menon. Picture: NGC/Margaryta Tevosian. Featured Image: NGC/Design.

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