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NBI Women in Biotech event: Yes, YOU can!

Over the past years, the number of female graduates in core STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) in the UK has not ceased to increase, reaching a total of 24% of total graduates in 2017.

However, despite an increased involvement of women in STEM companies, the female workforce remains underrepresented when it comes to positions with greater responsibilities. Indeed, in 2010, the government-supported Davies review was introduced in order to counter the gender imbalance and underrepresentation of females on board. As reported in 2017, only 67% of STEM companies are meeting the 25% females-on-board target. (Source: WISE).

But despair not!

Times are changing and several campaigns are taking place, bringing together men and women to make a change about gender imbalance on boards by raising awareness on the matter.

This is especially important for young female students at the beginning of their career, which is why implementing a positive state of mind and encouraging them needs to start at university. Getting in touch with women in the field who have built a career and are making an impact is, without a doubt, as crucial for female as for male students in order to learn from their experience and their spirit.

And the NBI's got your back!

We are proud to launch the second event of 2018:"Women in Biotech", for you to hear about what four fantastic women have learned from their journey in the everchanging field that is biotechnology.

We are delighted to welcome:

Natalie Cureton: In-vivo Research Scientist, Oncology Innovative Medicines division at AstraZeneca

Natalie completed her undergraduate degree in Industrial Pharmaceutical Sciences at Liverpool John Moores University, graduating in 2012. She then moved to The University of Manchester and obtained her PhD in 2016. Natalie’s PhD project focussed on the development of a targeted drug delivery system to enable selective drug delivery to the placenta, with an overall aim to treat pregnancy complications such as fetal growth restriction. During this project, Natalie developed peptide-conjugated liposomes for intravenous delivery, enabling her to selectively deliver a range of drug compounds that improved fetal growth, whilst having limited systemic side effects. As part of her PhD, Natalie spent 3 months at The University of Manchester Intellectual Property (UMIP) working on the commercialisation of research from across The University of Manchester. After completing her PhD, Natalie went on to her current role as an In Vivo Research Scientist in the Oncology Innovative Medicines division at AstraZeneca, based in Alderley Park. In this role, she works across the oncology portfolio to deliver new potential drugs for a range of cancers, with her currently having a particular focus on new treatments for breast cancer.

Karolina Szczesna: Multilingual Product Manager,Proteintech

Karolina Szczesna started her Bachelor in Pharmaceutical Chemistry at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, Poland. After completing her Masters in Biotechnology at the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands, she joined the M.Curie network becoming an International PhD student at the University of Barcelona, Spain. Her main research focus is related to Central Nervous System and Oncological Disease Models. Karolina's scientific achievements are reflecting in more than 10 PubMed Publications. She is experienced in generating and testing novel screening methods, launching new products and developing relationships between researchers and commercial partners. Currently working in Proteintech, biotechnological company, where she is a multilingual Product Manager, being responsible for coordination of international collaborations and marketing branding worldwide.

Anastassia Bolotkova: President at Innovation Forum and Cell Therapy Professional at Cellular Therapeutics Ltd

Originally coming from Estonia, Anastassia moved to the UK to pursue undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications in Molecular Biology and Translational Medicine at the University of Manchester. Throughout the degrees, she has completed several local and international summer internships in Estonia, UK and Germany, specializing in cancer research. Additionally, she has working experience in several pharmaceutical settings, such as Pharma Analyst in a global consultancy and Safety Screening Scientist at AstraZeneca. Anastassia is currently involved in research and manufacturing personalised immunotherapy for melanoma patients, which she describes as the most challenging and rewarding role she has ever had. Through honing crucial soft skills for successful leadership, Anastassia evolved to become President of the IF, Manchester, within almost a year of joining as Business Development Associate.

Beverley Jordan: Non Executive Director at Wirral Community NHS Foundation Trust/Business Management and Change Consultant at BAJ Consulting.

Beverley is a Business Management and Finance executive with over twenty-five years’ track record in a broad range of business and project challenges. Her career has spanned experience in major Audit and smaller Accounting practice, and for the last 22 years she has worked in the Pharmaceutical Industry across a number of diverse roles in Finance, Commercial, Business Development and latterly Research & Development. Her experience includes working globally, in the UK Market and across Latin America. She is also currently a non-executive director working with the NHS.

Beverley holds a BA in Modern Languages (French and Spanish) and whilst working at PWC Beverley gained the ACA qualification and registered as a Chartered Accountant. She then went on to work at Jackson Stephen, a well-established chartered accountancy and business advisory firm, as Audit Manager. She moved to AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals as the vice-president of Finance & Enabling Operations, a role she held for 19 years moving on to become the Head of Global Medicines Development, the business division of the AZ responsible for the clinical development and Regulatory approval of new medicines globally, for 3 years.

Get your dose of inspiration and come have a chat and a drink during our networking session!


Monday 16th April 2018

Michael smith building

Talks: 2:30-4pm in the seminar room

Networking: 4-5pm in lounge


See you there!

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