Innovation Manager, Innovate Calgary
What inspired you to enter and pursue this field?
My research work and interest in bringing inventions and discoveries from university labs to the market for public use.
How did you come to be in this position?
During my PhD program at University of Alberta, I was involved in a lot of student groups on campus and enjoyed arranging career development events for graduate students and post-docs. I was introduced to the technology transfer field at one such event and decided to learn more about the field. I got exposed to a lot of cutting-edge research work at my University through departmental seminars, conferences etc. but always wondered about the application of research and the process of making it widely available to improve health and well-being of the public. I wanted to combine my training in Life sciences with the business aspects of research commercialization. I joined University of Alberta's technology transfer office, initially as a summer intern, and then as an employee which helped me learn a lot about Intellectual Property law, Market Analysis, and research commercialization which opened a lot of doors for me. I enjoy working in the technology transfer field as it has allowed me to apply my academic background with my soft skills to develop my career.
What advice would you give young women looking to enter your current line of work?
I would advise young women to network and learn about various career opportunities within and outside academia. Don't be afraid to reach out to people outside your immediate network and learn to be outside your comfort zone. I met a lot of people who were willing to discuss their career path with me and provide guidance back when I was a graduate student. I would encourage everyone to accept new opportunities to learn and expand their skills.