For those interested in the sciences who want to explore opportunities outside the lab, there are many career paths to explore through OHSU Technology Transfer and Business Development. The office offers a comprehensive internship program to help participants – bioscience or engineering graduates pursuing advanced degrees in these areas as well as medicine, business, or law, who also have an interest in intellectual property and technology business development – gain experience in navigating the business, legal, and commercialization process of moving scientific innovations to the market. Over the past several years, more than 55 interns have come through the program, going on to apply valuable knowledge and skills to a variety of science, business, and legal professions. Meet TTBD’s current summer interns:
For Michaele Armstrong, who received her Ph.D. in molecular oncology and M.B.A. in strategy and operations from the University of Pittsburgh, a TTBD internship was the ideal experience for pursing her career goals in biomedical portfolio and alliance management. As an intern, Armstrong evaluates new OHSU technologies for commercial potential, drafts non-confidential summaries and marketing materials, conducts market research and investigator interviews, markets technologies to potential licensees, and drafts licensing agreements and amendments. In tandem with her internship, Armstrong consults with local biotech businesses to evaluate and facilitate university intellectual property.
LeeAnn A. Rooney is no stranger to OHSU. After receiving her M.S. in chemistry from Stony Brook University, she joined OHSU’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, where she’s been a research associate for the past eight years. Rooney pursued a TTBD internship to explore her interest in transitioning from the bench and lab management into the technology transfer and business development field. She is working to evaluate OHSU technologies developed as part of the Beat AML research initiative and has gained experience in preparing new technology disclosure evaluations and non-confidential summaries, surveying prior art, and preparing competitive analyses.
Brenda Watt, who received her Ph.D. in cell and molecular biology from the University of Pennsylvania and completed her postdoctoral studies in OHSU’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, wanted to flex her research muscles in a different way. As a TTBD intern, Watt identifies trends in material transfer and research-sponsored agreements, and helps determine new collaborative opportunities. Watt was recently hired as a lead scientist by StoneStable Inc., a local startup developing a product to reduce vaccine wastage by eliminating the need for refrigeration.
Where are they now?
We checked in with our interns from the 2015-2016 academic year to see where they are on their career paths since completing the TTBD internship.
Abby Dotson, Ph.D., worked closely with the business development team to identify and develop industry partnerships for OHSU’s infectious disease technologies. She has since accepted a permanent position within TTBD as an alliance manager.
Sudeshna Dutta, Ph.D., worked with the licensing team to evaluate the commercial potential of OHSU-owned mouse models. She currently works as a translational strategist at Due North Innovation, a Portland company dedicated to moving technologies to the market.
Scott Vanderwerf, Ph.D., worked with the licensing team to prepare non-confidential summaries and evaluate the commercial potential of OHSU technologies. Vanderwerf was hired as a lead scientist at Pacific Diabetes Technologies a few weeks prior to the end of his internship.
TTBD is now accepting 2016-2017 internship applications! Apply by Aug. 26, 2016.
The year-long unpaid internship program starts at the beginning of the academic school year (next start date: Oct. 3, 2016). Interns are expected to volunteer 8 to 10 hours per week in the TTBD office.
To qualify, candidates must:
- Hold a bachelor’s degree in a life science, physical science, and/or engineering
- Be pursuing or have received a graduate-level degree in science, medicine, engineering, business, or law
- Have an interest in intellectual property, technology transfer, and/or business development
To apply, please visit the careers and internships page on the TTBD website.