I was born/grew up in: West Grey, ON
I now live in: Toronto, ON
I completed my training/education at: I have a Graduate Diploma in Business (GDB) from Smith School of Business at Queen’s University
I completed a Bachelor of Science (BScH specializing in Biochemistry with Co-op) and Certificate in Business (CIB), Queen’s University and Smith School of Business at Queen’s University, respectively (concurrent programs).
What I do at work
Synaptive Medical is a medical device and technology company. My role is to help create and carry out our marketing plans. This includes creating marketing materials for sales and clinical teams. I also help support international conferences, tradeshows, webinars and corporate events.
Normally I have in-person meetings and attend large conference tradeshows where I work at our exhibit booth. Due to the global pandemic, I do most of my work on my computer. My current marketing role is largely creative-based. To do this work, I use Adobe programs like InDesign, Photoshop, and After Effects; but also Canva. I create graphics for social media and assist coworkers with their PowerPoint presentations. For large projects, I work with a marketing agency and do some project management. Much of my work is with the Product Management team. Here, I help create marketing items for products, update our website, as well as some internal odd jobs.
I like to work directly with the people for whom I’m creating marketing materials. This helps me make sure the item emphasizes the right content. It also helps me make sure the medium works well for its intended use. For example, sometimes PowerPoint slides are best; at other times, a PDF document will work better. I like to think about ways to improve the things I do. For example, I might develop templates so that the branding is consistent and easier to update in the future.
My career path is
I thought I wanted to be a doctor until second year university when I took physiology. I realized then that I didn’t like learning about body systems broadly. I did like learning about why things work and doing the hands-on lab work. I spoke with an upper-year student about options and I decided to take Biochemistry with co-op. I also took some business courses “just because”.
I thought I might want to get a PhD. However, after doing a lot of research, although I did love the lab, I knew I didn’t want to do that forever. Co-op was a perfect way to test drive working on the commercial side of science. I found that, although I loved the lab, I loved the business side more! I found it more rewarding to work with existing innovations and bring those innovations to patients. My Co-op experience, talking to people in industry, and interviewing at different companies, all played a part in helping me to decide exactly where in the industry I wanted to be. Check my LinkedIn profile for more
I am motivated by
The company’s products are very exciting! Not only are they innovative technology, but also their application has an impact on many areas of a hospital’s healthcare system, beyond the patient. Although I don’t work directly with doctors, hospital administration, or patients, I do play an indirect role to bring those innovations to patients (i.e. by supporting our Sales Team).
Working at the headquarters in Corporate Marketing, I get to see what I create used in the field, shown to doctors, and the public – and internationally! I like to directly create (or project manage to create) items that I’m proud to show off to be the face of the company. Working in a small team, I can point to many items and say, “I made that!”
How I affect people’s lives
The company I work for makes innovative medical devices. In my role, I consider my “customers” to be our sales reps and others within the company. I create marketing or sales materials for them to be able to communicate about our products clearly and professionally. I like to be involved with the initial ask so I understand what is needed. My goal is to make sure that my finished material is useful to the person who will be using it (my customers).
Outside of work I
Outside of work, I volunteer with the Science to Business Network (S2BN). When I was in university, I didn’t have formal support or direction as to what’s out there for science jobs in industry. I also informally mentor independently to give back.
My advice to others
There are so many areas within industry to use science. Don’t feel pressured to know what you want right now, but do work to keep your opportunities open! Take your sciences but also some business courses to invest in yourself and show that you’re serious about this path. Do extracurriculars smartly – pick a few to be focused to learn new skills and contribute. Also, do networking – it is never too early to start! LinkedIn is great to reach out to people and learn about their path.