Elena Spencer is Chief of Staff to the Chief Scientific Officer for the Inflammation & Immunology Research Unit at Pfizer. After 15 years as a bench scientist, she pivoted to R&D Strategy & Operations in 2016. Elena is also co-founder, President, and CEO of Kendall Square Orchestra, a community organization that seeks to connect science and technology professionals through music. She has been an avid volunteer at WEST events for 3 years and was the recipient of the WEST “Making a Difference in the Community” award in 2020 and “Women of the Future” award in 2018. I recently had the privilege to speak with Elena about her involvement with the WEST community, her career journey, advice for people making career transitions, and how she finds a work-life balance. - Emma Sullaway
Dr. Anne Thessen is a researcher at the Center for Health Artificial Intelligence of University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Center. Anne is well known for her work on data infrastructure and the application of semantic technologies and machine learning in biodiversity and earth science. She has been an avid volunteer at WEST events for over 10 years and was the recipient of the WEST Giving Back Award in 2017. I recently had the privilege to speak with Anne about her journey, her involvement with the WEST community, and the advice she has for people considering a career transition. - Emma Sullaway
This year’s National Women’s Month theme is “Providing Healing, Promoting Hope." According to the National Women’s History Alliance, as written on History.com, this theme is "both a tribute to the ceaseless work of caregivers and frontline workers during this ongoing pandemic and also a recognition of the thousands of ways that women of all cultures have provided both healing and hope throughout history."
Topics: Events, STEM, Women, Transitions, Career, Awards, Community, Giving Back, Work Life Balance, Resilience, Entrepreneurship, Network, Giving, Job, negotiation, Leader, Women in STEM, Workshop, Networking, Upcoming Events, Professional, Connect, Balance, Inspiration, Role Models, Delegation, Developing Your Skills, Volunteer, Board of Directors, Confidence, Leaders, Book Club, Impact, Career Development, New Opportunities, Mentor, Inclusion, #WESTevent, #WESTorg, 20th Anniversary, Grow
Topics: Events, STEM, Women, Science, Transitions, Career, Panel, Cambridge, Success, Women in STEM, Networking, Upcoming Events, Innovation, Professional, Biotech, Digital, Career Path, Career Development, Career Possibilities, Speed Networking, New Opportunities, #WESTevent, #WESTorg, Be Fearless, Be Brave, Venture Capital/VC, Business Development, Research & Development, Devices, Medical
Promoted to manager? Congrats!
Wait, wait. Wait. What exactly is my job now?
The shift from individual contributor to manager can be difficult. As Karen Dillon explains, “The irony for most newly appointed managers is that the skills and qualities that earned them the promotion are very different from those that will serve them well as a leader.”
This paradox is especially sharply felt in STEM. Fortunately, while acute, this reaction is also incredibly common. To learn more, WEST spoke to Richard Laskey about his experience transitioning from a senior software engineer to software engineering manager.
Topics: Leadership, STEM, Women in STEM, Upcoming Events, Business, Career Path, Management, Delegation, Lead, Emotional Intelligence, Developing Your Skills, Insight, Confidence, Leaders, Own It, Empowerment, New Opportunities, Advice, MBA, #WESTevent, Change Management, #WESTorg, Women in Business, Organizational Culture, Be Fearless, Be Brave
1–I’m not an effective networker because I'm not a natural extrovert.
You’re the boss of you. You author your own self-fulfilling prophecy when you decide whether to limit yourself to, or expand upon, your natural talents. Everyone, extrovert or introvert, has to be intentional about networking. And success in anything, not just networking, is far more strongly correlated to continuous effort than the hand that fate or genetics dealt you. A chance event may point you in a certain direction, but only you can keep yourself moving along that path or venture off to go bushwhacking elsewhere, if so inclined.
Learn more about past events listed below
5/15: Finding your Voice Among all the Chatter
6/12: How to Inspire, Advocate and Grow During Change
6/20: Building Your Company Culture and Developing Your People
Topics: Events, Best Practices, STEM, Women, Boston, Tech, Science, Career, Communication, Community, Panel, Cambridge, Network, Women in STEM, Workshop, Networking, Innovation, Biotech, Discussion, Interactive, Change, Lessons Learned, Connect, Management, Developing Your Skills, Leaders, Own It, Advocate, Diversity, #WESTevent, Change Management, #WESTorg, Organizational Culture, Corporate Culture
By Jo Viney, Co-founder and CSO, Pandion Therapeutics
Last summer, one of our local radio stations, WBUR, ran a feature entitled “How Boston Became 'The Best Place In The World' To Launch A Biotech Company” (WBUR, June 19th 2017). The article described the evolution of our unique infrastructure – physical, cultural and sociological – that resulted in Boston being THE place where ideas are catalyzed and made into reality. But what does it really take to be an innovator? And what characteristics are essential to becoming a successful entrepreneur?
Topics: Events, STEM, Women, Boston, Team, Science, Career, Community, Entrepreneurship, Panel, Cambridge, Success, Women in STEM, Networking, Upcoming Events, Innovation, Biotech, Discussion, Lessons Learned, Inspiration, Support, Challenges, Leaders
You probably heard about the detection of gravitational waves a couple of years ago. You know that it was a really, really important discovery, but what exactly was it and why was it important? Come learn about it from one of the most prominent scientists in Scotland, Professor Sheila Rowan, the Chief Scientific Advisor to the Scottish government. When she is not developing equipment for detecting cosmic gravitational waves, what does Dr. Rowan advise the Scottish government on? What are the most pressing science issues in Scotland today, how do these relate to science issues facing other parts of the world, and how did she get this appointment? Come to the WEST Rockstar breakfast on April 5th and have an intimate conversation with Dr. Rowan. Maybe you want to know if she’s met the Queen.