Propel Careers

May 17 2016 FILS Event: Overview of Clinical, Regulatory, and Medical Affairs Career Paths 

May 18, 2016 
by Lauren Celano 

On May 17th, Propel Careers, MassBio, and MassBioEd hosted the 5th FILS (Futures in Life Sciences) event in the 2016 FILS event series to cover career paths in the Clinical, Regulatory, and Medical Affairs Career area. Lauren Celano moderated the panel, which included Jayati R. Vaidya, Life Sciences Strategic Advisor at Slalom Consulting, Jay Russak, Consultant II at Halloran Consulting Group and Begona Ruiz Perez, Ph.D., an Associate Director and Medical Writer at Biogen. Each panel member shared their career path, insights for their specific area, as well as advice for current graduate students and postdoctoral fellows looking to work in their area. All FILs event are held at the MassBio Offices (300 Technology Square, 8th Floor, Cambridge, MA 02139) from 5:30-8:00pm. About 80 people attended.

More about the FILS Series:
Propel Careers, MassBio, and the MassBioEd have joined together to organize a series of networking and panel events focused on raising awareness of career paths that exist in life sciences for individuals with advanced degrees. This Futures in Life Science program will bring together experts across a wide range of disciplines and functional areas within the life science industry, who detail their roles and provide a rich context for the audience to gain a clear understanding of the skills, aptitudes, competencies, and personalities that thrive in their particular functions. Attendance for this program is open to current graduate students; post doctoral fellows, and medical residents who are interested in careers in the life sciences industry.  The event will focus on the various career options within the regulatory, clinical, and medical affairs areas.

Full FILS 2016 Series Event Schedule: All events held at MassBio Offices, 300 Technology Square, 8th floor, Cambridge MA 02139 from 5:30-8pm.

Wed Jan 27th 2016: Overview of Career Paths in Life Sciences Industry

Tues Feb 23rd 2016: Overview of Consulting Career Paths in the Life Sciences Industry

Tues March 22nd 2016: Commercialization 1 (i.e. Marketing, Alliance Management, Business Development, Product Management) Career Paths)

Tues April 26th 2016: Career Paths in Research and Development I: (i.e. Chemistry, Biology, Pharmacology / Toxicology, Intellectual Property)

Tues May 17th 2016: Career Paths in Clinical, Regulatory, and Medical Affairs

Tues Sept 27th 2016: Career Paths in Big Data

Tues Oct 18th 2016: Commercialization II (Reimbursement, Pharmacoeconomics, Patient Advocacy, and Market Access) Career Paths

Tues Nov 15th 2016: Career Paths in Research and Development II (Preclinical Research, Clinical Biomarker Development, Research Operations / Finance, Project Management)

May Panel Bio’s

Jayati R. Vaidya, Life Sciences Strategic Advisor, Slalom Consulting
Jayati has 10 years of successful experience in developing innovative patient-centric medicine models to translate science into effective treatments for disease. As an advisor to life sciences companies, Jayati has provided global product development and commercialization strategies with a focus on investigational therapies targeted for the treatment of rare, serious and life-threatening conditions. Jayati has worked with small, mid-size, and global top 10 companies to define product strategy to help improve meaningful outcomes for patients, optimize the therapy’s commercial value, and competitive differentiation. Additionally, Jayati has led the development of several thought leadership point of views on key industry topics ranging from patient engagement, building world-class medical affairs organizations, product launch excellence, to venture capital investment. Jayati is a graduate of the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences and is the co-chair for the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council.

Jay Russak, Consultant II, Halloran Consulting Group
Jay Russak joined Halloran Consulting Group in 2016 bringing a decade of drug development experience in Clinical Operations and Business Operations.  Jay focuses on providing innovative strategic solutions to clients including process optimization, quality systems, and program management.  Jay also provides clinical operations support to clients across all phases of development and has experience across several indications including multiple sclerosis, oncology, hemophilia, and liver disease. In addition, his twelve years of EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) experience, volunteering and responding to emergency medical situations, means he brings his energy and calm-amidst-a-storm to every situation. Prior to joining Halloran, Jay was a Senior Manager of Business Process at Biogen. There, he provided design expertise for Development Sciences and GxP research functions and drove the development and maintenance of the Process Owner Network (PON). The PON provided the necessary framework and governance to ensure compliant and optimized processes, becoming the key component of the Center of Excellence within R&D. Jay has personal experience in quality systems, having worked on inspection teams, representing the company to both the MHRA and FDA, as well as leading the Controlled Document Management Group. Prior to Biogen, Jay was a Clinical Research Coordinator at Dana Farber Cancer Institute working in breast research oncology. It was here Jay became intrigued with the Clinical Research progress. His impressive company experience is balanced with additional training (he is water, ice, vehicle, and rope rescue trained along with his Six Sigma Green Belt certification), a genuine love and care for people, and a severe weakness for chocolate-chip cookies. Jay earned a Master of Art in Medical Sciences from Boston University School of Medicine and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Northeastern University. He is currently completing a Master of Business Administration at Worcester Polytechnic Institute.  He lives with his wife, Andrea, who works as a nurse, and two children in the greater Boston metro area. Together they spend their days split between outdoor activities and caring for people, one patient and clinical study at a time.

Begona Ruiz Perez, Ph.D., Associate Director, Medical Writing, Biogen
Begona Ruiz Perez is an Associate Director and Medical Writer for Biogen. Prior to that she was a Senior Manager and Medical Writer at Biogen Idec. She has also had a position working as an Associate Principal Writer, Early Clinical Development, at Biogen Idec. She was a Preclinical Development Consultant for a BRP Consulting and Senior Director Preclinical Research, at Eyegate Pharmaceuticals. Shev has been an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School. She completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Immunology from Harvard Medical School and earned a Ph.D., in Microbiology, Immunology from Universidad Complutense de Madrid. She completed her B.S. (Hons), in Food Science and Technology from Universidad Complutense de Madrid and B.S. (Hons), Pharmacy, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

Lauren Celano, MBA, CEO, Propel Careers
Lauren Celano is the co-founder and CEO of Propel Careers; a life science search and career development firm focused on connecting talented individuals with entrepreneurial life sciences companies. Propel Careers is engaged across all areas of life sciences, including therapeutics, medical devices, healthcare IT, diagnostics, consulting, venture capital, and investment banking. Prior to Propel Careers, Lauren was a senior account manager for SNBL USA where she worked with emerging biotech companies in Europe, Asia, and the US to help characterize and advance their drug molecules. Prior to SNBL USA, she held business development positions with Aptuit and Quintiles, where she focused on IND enabling studies to advance therapeutics from discovery into the clinic. Earlier in her career, Lauren held positions as a marketing manager and account manager at Absorption Systems, where she was responsible for managing life sciences companies in the northeastern United States. She has a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Gettysburg College and an MBA with a focus in the health sector and entrepreneurship from Boston University. Lauren is on the Board of MassBioEd and she also serves on the programming committee of the Capital Network.

About the Organizers
MassBio - MassBio, a not-for-profit organization that represents and provides services and support for the Massachusetts biotechnology industry, is the nation's oldest biotechnology trade association. Founded in 1985, MassBio is committed to advancing the development of critical new science, technology and medicines that benefit people worldwide. Representing over 600 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, research hospitals, and service organizations involved in life sciences and health care, MassBio works to advance policy and promote education, while providing member programs and events, industry information, and services. To learn more, visit:

MassBioEd - The Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation, founded in 2001, is a non-profit charitable organization committed to supporting science and biotechnology education in Massachusetts through school programs, workforce training, and lifelong learning.  MassBioEd is closely affiliated with the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council and helps the Council in fulfilling its goals to nurture the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) pipeline in Massachusetts. To learn more, visit

Propel Careers - Propel Careers is a Boston based life sciences search and career development firm founded in 2009 to foster entrepreneurship and to cultivate leaders in the life sciences industry. Propel recognizes the importance of job creation and career development opportunities to the success of the industry as well as to next generation of industry leaders. The mission of Propel Careers is to make connections that fuel innovation, and we do this through placement, networking, coaching and mentorship. To learn more, visit


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