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Thomas Krannich, PhD student
Please describe shortly your current profession. How does your typical day at work
I am a PhD student in the Genome Informatics group at the Berlin Institute of Health (BIH). My
daily work comprises learning about state-of-the-art algorithms, analyzing human DNA data
and designing novel methods for structural variant calling and genotyping.
What was your motivation to study Bioinformatics?
Back in school I had an emphasis on Biology. Personally, I always had a strong interest in
computers and technology, so Bioinformatics sounded like a good compromise.
When and how did you choose your current profession? Did you realize your plans
from the time of your studies?
The announcement for my curent position came aross me when I did my master thesis. A lot of
conditions seemed very fitting for what I was looking for after university. Somewhere midterm
of my studies I was confident to work on artificial intelligence and machine learning, what I am
still interested in.
What in your opinion is the most important thing for your work that you learned during
your studies? What do you still profit from?
Regarding the content of my studies, it was definitely the lectures on algorithms and data
structures. But I rather believe that the most important skill we learned is combining knowledge
from various fields and tackling questions in natural science from different angles.
Which additional qualifications should one gain as a student that are crucial or useful
for your current profession?
Some things are not explicitly taught during the bioinformatics studies but are certainly useful:
using a scientific work environment (Linux, git, servers/cluster, etc.) and good communication
skills in general.
Is there anything from the Master’s program that evokes especially strong memories?
I remember many funny side stories from lectures and lecturers. Some might even yielded a
What advice would you give the master students who would like to pursue a similar
The bioinformatics master course at FU offers a broad variety of specialties to explore what
you like and what you are good at. I recommend to discover and try out as much as you can.
Deep knowledge will follow the rest of your career.