Skip to main content
Career Profile

Michael Hiatt

STEMCELL Technologies
Michael Hiatt | Scientifique, STEMCELL Technologies
Michael Hiatt | Scientifique, STEMCELL Technologies
Location Born
Location Now
Education Pathway
School Subject

Michael Hiatt is a Scientist at STEMCELL Technologies.

About me

I was born/grew up in: Vancouver, BC

I now live in: Vancouver, BC

I completed my training/education at: I received a BSc in Cellular and Molecular Biology from Simon Fraser University and a PhD from the Experimental Medicine Department at the University of British Columbia. Before joining STEMCELL, I travelled to Los Angeles for a Postdoctoral Fellowship with Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and the University of Southern California.

What I do at work

During the day, my activities range from being hands on in the lab to working with team members from other teams or departments. I am responsible not only for the scientific work that we do, but also for moving potential products through the commercialization process. This can include identifying if and how a product can be manufactured.

I enjoy the challenge of solving problems. They may be challenges faced by our customers or by other team members within the company. This activity requires all of the creativity, technical skills and expertise that I have developed over my academic career. In particular, we follow the same scientific process to design and execute research experiments, troubleshoot problems, and reach conclusions as university scientists. This process is central to successful problem solving.

One of my favorite aspects of my job involves projects that make use of microscopes. While other types of data are very important for answering the key questions surrounding our products, there is something deeply satisfying about “seeing” the things we work with in a way we can’t with the naked eye.

My career path is

I got to my current position by following what interested me. I was not sure at times where this would take me, but it has succeeded in leading me to a career that I enjoy. I owe a lot of this success to the Cooperative Education Department at Simon Fraser University. Through the Co-op program I learned what it was in science I enjoyed, and just as importantly, what types of science jobs I disliked. This is incredibly useful data to have when planning one’s future career.

I am motivated by

As I have stated above, I enjoy the problem solving aspect. The process of identifying a problem, testing possible solutions, and improving something so it works for a customer is a very rewarding experience. It helps to be surrounded by lots of other smart people with their own great ideas to really push you to develop the best possible answer.

I have always enjoyed the feeling of genuine discovery, even when it is something small that may result from a seemingly simple experiment. One of the great things about my current role is that these discoveries are not abstract, but instead get turned into real world products. This provides the opportunity to build “things” as well as develop knowledge.

How I affect peoples’ lives

It is rewarding to launch new products that help researchers in academia, biotech and pharma to make new discoveries and enhance human health.

Outside of work I

I enjoy hiking through the spectacular scenery of British Columbia, playing golf, and spending time with my family.

My advice to others

Science can be a tough career. By its very nature, it is difficult and many of the things you try will fail. It is important that you love what you are studying or researching to help get through the tough times and enjoy the experience in discovering something new.

When I was a student, I enjoyed:
  • Literature and English language arts
  • Music
  • Science
When I was a student, I would have described myself as someone who:
  • Played on a sports team
  • Enjoyed working with my hands
  • Felt at home in the outside, natural environment
  • Learned best “by doing”
  • Liked to take things apart to see how they worked
  • Engaged in activities such as fishing, berry picking and hunting

Related Topics

Explore Career Profiles

  • Meghana Munipalle outside on summer day in front of tree

    Meghana Munipalle (she/her)

    Graduate Student, Biomedical Engineering

    I am a graduate student working towards my PhD in biological and biomedical engineering.
  • Areej Riaz headshot

    Areej Riaz

    Operations Manager

    I work with individuals and organizations on programs that help address climate change.
  • Tristan Lecompte Headshot

    Tristan Lecompte

    Environmental Program Officer

    I interpret and communicate pollution data collected by the National Pollutant Release Inventory (NPRI).
  • Dr. Bukola Salami with nursing student seated at computer.

    Bukola Salami (she/her)

    Professor, Faculty of Nursing

    I do research with Black communities and teach undergraduate and graduate students.
  • close up of technicians hands showing pipette with blood sample from a container

    Marta V. (she/her)

    Forensic Search Biologist

    I examine evidence from crime scenes for biological material such as blood, semen, or touch DNA.
  • Dr. Paula Littlejohn headshot

    Dr. Paula Littlejohn (she/her)

    Postdoctoral Research Fellow

    I research problems that affect peoples’ health, specifically in children.
  • Dolcy Meness doing water sampling

    Dolcy Meness

    Nagadjitodjig Aki (Guardian)

    I work as a Guardian for the environment and cultural teachings of my community, Kitigan Zibi.
  • Brock Fenton headshot

    Brock Fenton (he/him)

    Emeritus Professor

    I study bats around the world.
  • Molly Neave holding tray of produce inside growing unit.

    Molly Neave (she/her)

    Horticulture Research Associate

    I grow and research crops in an indoor, vertical farm.
  • Olivia Ivany headshot outside with trees and green field in background

    Olivia Ivany

    Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

    I perform different kinds of ultrasounds on different parts of the body.
  • Winston Campeau headshot

    Winston Campeau

    Researcher - Evolutionary Processes

    I use computer simulations and math to research how animals' behavior changes when their environment changes.
  • Portrait de Kim TallBear

    Kim TallBear (she/her)

    Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Peoples, Technoscience and Society, Faculty of Native Studies

    I teach university and do research on science and technology from an Indigenous perspective.
  • Mahesh Rachamalla in his lab wearing white lab coat

    Mahesh Rachamalla (he/him)

    Graduate Student (Toxicology)

    My research will help find solutions for protecting aquatic species from the effects of heavy metals.
  • Dr. Molly Shoichet headshot

    Molly Shoichet (she/her)

    Professor and Research Team Lead

    I teach undergraduate students in engineering and I lead a research team in biomedical and chemical engineering.
  • Kaitlin Guitard working on site of an aquaculture setting.

    Kaitlin Guitard

    Water Quality Technician

    I monitor the sea water at salmon farms for harmful plankton and jellyfish.
  • Portrait de Devon Hardy

    Devon Hardy (she/her/elle)

    Program Director

    I run a non-profit program that supports environmental sustainability in the arts.
  • Mike Bryan on walkway over fish tank

    Mike Bryan (he/him)

    Hatchery Technician

    I work at a fish hatchery in the aquaculture industry.
  • Megan Coles headshot with blurred buildings and landscape in the background

    Megan Coles

    Pediatric Nurse

    I care for the inpatients admitted to the medical-surgical units at my local children's hospital.
  • Nicole Redvers headshot

    Nicole Redvers (she/her)

    Associate Professor and Director of Planetary Health

    I carry out Indigenous health research and support Indigenous communities and organizations in their health research needs.
  • Portrait de Gabriel Hould Gosselin

    Gabriel Hould Gosselin

    Research Associate

    I support teams that collect data on the melting permafrost layer in the arctic.