I am Danushika Nayomi a graduate in B.Sc. (Honors) in Biotechnology conducted by Horizon Campus in collaboration with Nilai University, Malaysia. I was fortunate to secure a first class with my commitment, proper guidance of Faculty of Science and motivation from my parents. Graduation Ceremony 2018 of Nilai University was held in 18th August 2018. I was invited together with two of my colleagues, Tarinija Gopalakrisnan and Prisca Issac who also got First Classes to attend this grand ceremony. My other colleagues also have performed well. Mr. Ajitha Wanasinghe, CEO of Horizon Campus motivated us by joining our team. Dr. Ng Shee Ping (PhD, Head/Senior Lecturer – School of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, Science and Technology) was one of the well-wishers among Nilai team who congratulated us.
At first before coming to Horizon Campus, I needed a program that cover the disciplines of science but also allow me to tailor my education to fit my professional goals. Then I found the Horizon Campus. And I recently attended the graduation ceremony held at Nilai University in Malaysia.
During the program, I have been able to further my studies within the sciences as well as acquainted with business concepts within the biotechnology industry. Our program included the basics of biology, chemistry and advanced modules like Cell and tissue culture, Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, Food science & Technology etc. Special feature is that it is also designed to produce graduates who have solid understanding in modules such as Entrepreneurship, Bioinformatics, Innovation & Commercialization which are required to exploit technological advances within a competitive environment. We are encouraged to exercise independence, initiative and responsibility and appreciate the need for continual professional development because of the intensity of this specialist program.
I cannot underestimate the value of this choice as it gave me confidence in my scientific ability and equipped me with skills that helped me to hit the ground running when I began my final year research project. The final year consisted of an independent in-depth research project that involved supervised research work in our modern labs. We had the opportunity to carry out techniques that are widely used in current biological science research. I carried out my research project on natural products which is related to pharmaceutical field under the mentoring and guidance of the high academically qualified supervisors. I was also able to publish my research at 4th international conference on multidisciplinary approaches organized by University of Sri Jayawardanapura. Offering high-quality and blend of modules throughout, the degree allows us to choose a research field that reflects our individual scientific strengths and interests.
The industrial placement module in the final year gave me the opportunity to put what I have learnt into practice, giving me a better understanding of my strengths and the chance to solidify my knowledge in an industry setting. I joined SGS Lanka (Pvt) Ltd. as an intern chemical analyst where I was given the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in food, water, fertilizer and cosmetic laboratories. I enjoyed my time there a lot acquiring transferable key skills, including technical laboratory competencies, skills in teamwork and decision-making.
There are great resources and amenities available to students. There are numerous clubs and societies to get involved in. I thoroughly enjoy my time spent at Horizon Campus. I think the diverse education that I received from this flexible and engaging program has prepared me for a career in academics as well as in industrial wise. Whether it is going into industry, pursuing further learning or branching out and going into the business world, there is always demand for Biotechnologists. So I believe that the Nilai Biotechnology program at Horizon Campus allows students to tailor their degree to their own interests giving those opportunities to select any of the option study blocks they wish. Thus the programme seeks to develop within graduates good practical, analytical and transferable skills applicable to a wide range of employment opportunities.
After successfully graduation with a first class honors, I was offered the position of Demonstrator in my own campus. Working together and sharing ideas in an open and fun environment whilst meeting some of the most amazing people, in faculty, many of whom have become close friends now. By covering the vast areas of the up and coming biotechnology industry, students can see which areas interest them most, and which don’t, and make informed decisions on where they would like their career path to go.