10th Annual Career Day (2016)

Keynote Symposium

Vanessa Federovich
Vanessa FederovichVice President - Human Resources and Corporate Services at Roche Canada

Vanessa has complete responsibility for all Human Resources functions (Talent Acquisition, Employee Relations & Business Partnerships, Leadership & Learning & Development, Organizational Change & Effectiveness, Total Rewards – Compensation, Benefits & Pension, HR Systems, HR Planning & Operations) and Corporate Services, (Safety, Environment, Security, Office Services, Print & Design Studio, the Administrative Assistance Resources Centre (AARC) and eCPMO (Enterprise wide Change & Project Management Office)).

In this role, Vanessa has shared responsibility for the success of the Canadian pharmaceuticals business by providing strategic contributions as a member of the Canadian Leadership Team as well as the Ethics & Integrity Committee.


Previously at Roche Canada, Vanessa was Head, Human Resources in 2008.  She also served as Director, Human Resources from 2003-2008 and as Manager, Human Resources from 2001-2003.  Prior to her role with Roche Canada, Vanessa worked within the Human Resources division at Bayer Inc.

Vanessa obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology from the University of Western Ontario.  She also holds several post-secondary certificates in Personnel Management, Human Resources Management and Strategic Change Leadership.

Vanessa is also the CLT sponsor for the Roche Social Committee (RoSoCo) and the Director’s Forum.

Vanessa’s keynote address will focus on: Roche Canada – Adapting to Meet the Needs of Canada’s Evolving Healthcare System

Career Panel Discussion

Professionals from a range of industries are invited to hold panel discussions on various topics. Please scroll down to learn about this year’s guests.

This year, we are pleased to offer the following Career Panel Discussion Sessions:

  • Industrial and Clinical R&D (SS 2102)
  • Consulting (SS 1073)
  • Medical & Regulatory Affairs (SS 1069)
  • Business Analysis & Development (SS 2118)
  • Scientific Communications (SS 2117)
  • Entrepreneurship (SS 1086)

Company Information Fair

A unique platform for company representatives to interact with exceptional graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and researchers. Please scroll down to learn about this year’s companies.


This year LSCDS is proud to present ‘Company spotlight sessions’, where representatives from participating companies/organizations will give a 15-20 minute presentation to highlight their company to potential student recruits.

2:40 – 3:00pm     OICR    SS 1072

Program Schedule:



Career Discussion Session

Panelist Position Company
Ricky Chan
Industry Relations Ontario Brain Institute
Firhan Malik
Advisor and Business Development ImmunoBiochem Corporation
Amarah Khan
Project Manager/Consultant PharmEng Technology
Adrian Snihur
Consultant Shift Health
Iqra Syed
Consultant Amaris
Panelist Position Company
Shehzad Iqbal
Scientific Advisor GSK
Mike Duong
Director, Medical Affairs – Evidence Generation Hoffmann-La Roche
Ronan Rogers
Medical Science Liaison Biogen
Vanja Petrovic
Medical Manager – Medical Science Liaison Hoffmann-La Roche
Christina Werhle
Regulatory Affairs Consultant Intrinsik Health Sciences
Feroz Sarkari
Associate Manager, Corporate Affairs Eli Lilly Canada
Panelist Position Company
Ivan Waissbluth
Director of Business Development The Centre for the Commercialization of Antibodies and Biologics (CCAB)
Jillian Hatnean
Business Development Specialist Mitacs Inc.
Laura Yu
Business Development Manager, Academic Entrepreneurship Ontario Centres of Excellence
Frédéric Sweeney
Vice-President, Business Dev. & Strategic Alliances bioMerieux
Arij Al-Chawaf
Director, Strategic Alliances Structural Genomics Consortium
Steven Molinski
Application Scientist Cyclica
Panelist Position Company
Xiangyuan Ma
Data Analyst Geneseeq Technology Inc.
Tao Yuan
Director Sanofi Pasteur
Sarmitha Sathiamoorthy
Scientist Sanofi Pasteur
John Oreopoulos
Staff Scientist Spectral Applied Research / Andor Technology
Sabrina Ali
Scientist I Luminex Corporation
David Uehling
Scientific Advisor & Group Leader, Medicinal Chemistry Ontario Institute for Cancer Research
Jeffrey Winston
Principal Research Scientist & Group Leader, Biology


Panelist Position Company
Katherine Wright
Senior Manager, Research Communications Canadian Cancer Society
Julie Turnbull
Editorial Director Klick Health
Jennifer Yip
Regional Manager Thermo Fisher Scientific
Rachael Harrison
Lead Medical Editor Klick Health
Brittany Matthews
Medical Writer Six Degrees Medical Consulting
Panelist Position Company
Michael Chrostowski
CEO Sound Options Tinnitus Treatments
Darren Anderson
Chief Communications Officer Vive Crop Protection
Leo Mui
Co-Founder, Director Lunanos
Leo Wan
Co-Founder Ranomics

Guest Biography

Ricky Chan, PhD joined the Ontario Brain Institute in July 2013 on the Industry Relations team.  His responsibilities include maximizing economic value through the neurotech cluster, building networks with innovation partners and government, supporting commercialization activities of Ontario neurotech companies, and developing management talent through experiential training opportunities. Prior to OBI, Ricky worked as a consultant at Deloitte managing the life sciences portfolio in the R&D and Government Incentives practice.  He gained broad experiences through his academic path in cancer biochemistry at some of the top research centres in Toronto, Hamilton, Montreal, and Boston.  Ricky serves on the Board of Directors (Treasurer) for the charity HOPE Toronto and is always seeking to engage new charitable activities.

LinkedIn: https://ca.linkedin.com/in/chanr11

Firhan Malik, PhD is a Business Development Advisor at ImmunoBiochem Corporation. Simply put, Firhan works as an advisor to help young companies in the life sciences (e.g., pharmaceutical, biotechnology) develop their business strategies.  Previously, he worked as a Senior Associate in a Toronto-based boutique healthcare investment startup, where he advised private and public companies in licensing/partnering, and mergers/acquisitions.
He received his PhD and MSc. from the University of Toronto in Physiology and Biochemistry respectively.  He also has a BSc. Honours in Biochemistry from Laurentian University.

Firhan’s hobbies include blogging, fitness (weight training, mountain biking), entrepreneurship, technology (Android, Tesla), watching Bollywood movies, and raving about KIA to anyone within earshot (much to the dismay of his wife).

Firhan’s dad constantly repeats quotes and attributes them to Albert Einstein. He has no idea if this quote is even from Einstein nonetheless here is it is, “Success is 1% intelligence and 99% perseverance.”

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/firhan-malik-phd-8a329563

Iqra Syed, MSc is currently working at Amaris as a Consultant in Market Access. She first graduated with a Bsc. in Life Science at McMaster University, with courses mainly focusing on biochemistry, cell physiology and neuropsychology. She also worked on a Problem Based Learning project which purpose was to suggest ways to reduce the lead content in ground water in the city of Hamilton. Then, Iqra graduated with a Msc in Health Science from McMaster University, with a specialization in Health Services Research. Her relevant courses were Biostatistics, Advanced analysis of Survey Data and Research Methodology. Prior to Amaris, she had work experience as a research student at McMaster University, and then worked for 2 years as an Associate Epidemiologist in a global provider of outsourced development services to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device industries.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/syediqra

Amarah Khan BSc is a Pharmaceutical Consultant for PharmEng Technology. She provides her expertise to the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Healthcare sectors. She is currently a Project Manager, Technical Services Department at Sanofi Pasteur, which is the largest vaccine manufacturer in the world. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Waterloo. She also has post-graduate training in Pharmaceutical Research & Development as well as holds a Project Management Professional designation. She is currently working on her next designation as a Certified Quality Auditor from the American Society of Quality. With over 7 years of experience, she has worked for many multinational firms in various departments, from Validation/Engineering to Quality Assurance. Identifying deviations and non-conformances and paying attention to quality concerns have developed Amarah into an established Pharmaceutical Professional who prepares manufacturers for regulatory audits and ensures production processes meet FDA/Health Canada guidelines. Amarah enjoys traveling the globe and is an avid sports fan. She is also passionate about volunteering in initiatives providing education to children in third world countries.

LinkedIn: ca.linkedin.com/in/amarahkhan

Adrian Snihur, PhD is a Consultant with Shift Health, a strategy consultancy focused on amplifying healthcare and research leadership, advancing global health innovation and achieving eminence in healthcare markets worldwide. Adrian combines an in-depth understanding of healthcare and the life sciences with business acumen to deliver convergent solutions that achieve tangible, meaningful and measurable outcomes across the HealthSphere. During his tenure at Shift Health, Adrian has assessed the merits of health technologies and drug products for leading pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies and private investment firms, provided strategic support for health-focused organizations to enhance research and commercialization activities, and helped clients across government, academia, industry and the not-for-profit sectors attract capital and facilitate partnerships. Adrian has worked extensively with public and private organizations across North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and has led projects spanning multiple disease areas, including oncology, behavioural health and HIV. Prior to joining Shift Health, Adrian completed his PhD and MSc studies in Neuroscience at the University of Western Ontario, where his research broadly focused on the prenatal and postnatal effects of hormones on brain and behaviour. Adrian also holds an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Biology & Psychology from McMaster University. He presented his research at numerous international scientific conferences and is first author on five original research papers published in renowned peer-reviewed academic journals. Outside of work, Adrian enjoys spending time with his wife and two young sons, and participating in sports and Ukrainian cultural activities.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/adrian-snihur-4a488327

Shehzad Iqbal, PhD is the Scientific Advisor, Medical Affairs – Vaccines, GSK. He is responsible for leading the interaction and exchange of information between GSK and external communities (Key External Experts, Advisory committees, Government policy makers), in order to advance scientific and medical understanding. He works with the Medical team and cross-functional teams (regulatory, clinical, marketing, market access, health economics and global teams) to provide scientific expertise, advice and technical leadership on GSK vaccines in the Canadian market. Education. He completed my BSc in cellular molecular and microbial biology and a MSc in Asthma and Inflammation in the Immunology Department. Subsequently, Shehzad moved to the HIV/AIDS field and completed his PhD in HIV vaccine research with Dr. Frank Plummer at the University of Manitoba/National Microbiology Laboratory. His thesis work looked at the role of mucosal immunology in HIV resistant sex workers, based in Nairobi, Kenya. Shehzad continued on with this work in his postdoctoral research at the University of Toronto with Dr Rupert Kaul. After working for 6 years, he began his MBA at Schulich and plans on finishing in 2017. Previously, Shehzad worked at Sanofi Pasteur as a Scientist in their R&D division and eventually moved to a Senior Scientist role. He enjoys playing soccer, mountain biking, and he recently discovered fishing!

LinkedIn: https://ca.linkedin.com/in/shehzad-iqbal-47178bb

Company Description

We believe scientific innovation in animal and crop sciences is part of a much more important story, that of human health. Healthier animals and crops, nurtured naturally through Alltech’s nutritional solutions, affect human well-being. For example, fruits, vegetables and animal proteins have become less nutrient-rich in the past half-century. From fish to oranges, you need to eat more today to get the same nutritional value. Our work within animal and crop sciences is restoring value and also exploring ways to naturally enrich foods through improving the animal diet or crop produced. For example, laying hens fed a diet rich in Alltech’s algae produce eggs enriched with DHA omega-3, an essential nutrient for human cognitive development and health at all ages.

Amaris is an international group of Consultants in Technology, Management and Biotechnology, with more than 60 offices across the world. Amaris’ success is based largely on personalized service which creates a close relationship between their Clients and their consultants, which in turn, adds value to their projects. In Toronto, Amaris has a strong focus on Biotechnologie, Pharmaceuticals, Market Access and Health Economics.

BGI was founded in 1999 as a nonprofit research organization. Over the years, BGI has grown into a multinational genomics company with significant global operations and a wide variety of next generation sequencing (NGS) services including whole genome sequencing, exome sequencing and RNA sequencing. With more than 5,000 employees across the globe and R&D, manufacturing, and commercial operations around the world, BGI is committed to providing genomics solutions to address the research, pharmaceutical, and clinical markets while utilizing the power of NGS technology in order to improve human health and empower large-scale human, plant, and animal genomics research.

Event sponsors