#FutureInYourHands – This motto properly describes how TÜV SÜD empowers its employees. It’s best to hear from TÜV SÜD executives and staff members what their personal experiences are working for TÜV SÜD.
Can you describe your role within TÜV SÜD?
I have two roles at TÜV SÜD. One is working in the Biological/Chemical Testing role helping to build a new state of the art laboratory here in the United States, a new addition to the TÜV SÜD Italy and India laboratories. The new lab will support the biocompatibility, chemical characterization, microbiology testing, as well as medical package testing.
I am also a Medical Product Expert, part of the GEMs Team (General Essential Modules), specializing in Sterilization, Reprocessing, and Viral Inactivation assessments for Medical Devices. I work with clients to ensure that their medical devices are safe and meet the applicable standards.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
I love working in the medical device industry and engaging clients on biological safety regulations and testing requirements. It’s also exciting being able to see innovative devices before they go on the market. I also love being able to work with colleagues from all over the world as TÜV SÜD truly embraces diverse ideas that drives safety in so many industries.
How did you choose this career path?
Ever since I was little, I knew I wanted to be in the medical field. I worked hard to excel in math and science, shadowed a few doctors, and volunteered at a local children’s hospital. In college, I worked in a genetics research laboratory and continued the path of working in biological labs doing regulatory testing. What really energized my career path was when I became a study director and was able to engage clients in their test plan design and setting up custom tests for unique products. I found that I love working directly with clients finding solutions to their projects.
Are there any challenges that you’ve faced during your career that have taught you important lessons?
I have had many challenges with complex projects at work that I was able to face and learn from, but there was one particular challenge that I faced and mastered that made a stressful part of my career very enjoyable, Work Travel. I used to travel a couple times a month for work and still do travel frequently and to make it enjoyable, I applied the same organization techniques I use in my daily work to organize my travel planning. This allowed me to go anywhere with little notice. Additionally, I will often bring along a family member to fly and spend time with when I am not working.
What advice would you give other women who want to pursue STEM or technical careers?
Figure out what part of science you are really passionate about, the particular thing that makes you read and research way beyond what perhaps you were asked of in school…the thing you geek out about. Then connect with others in those fields and ask them what they do on a day to day basis…does it involve that thing? Go for it because every day will then be an interesting journey that flows into the next. Does the career combine something else you love, like for me travel? Finally find a mentor in your field you can bounce ideas off of to help you lay out a path for your future….also the best paths are ones you create for yourself so don’t be scared to think outside the box of using your various skillset to find careers that you may not have known existed.
With respect to innovation, what do you think the industry will look like in the next few years?
There is so much happening in medical innovation, from robotics, wearables, IoMT (Internet of Medical Things) and connectivity, to cybersecurity, etc. In biological testing, we are seeing a trend away from animal testing, which is wonderful to see. There are innovative test methods that are being validated and slowly being accepted by regulatory agencies globally, a step in the right direction. I hope to see more of this in the years to come.
When not working, how do you spend your spare time?
During the winter months, I enjoy downhill skiing with my husband and 2-year-old daughter. In the summertime, I enjoy talking walks around the nearby lakes, hiking and swimming. I love traveling and try to take at least 2 international trips per year. At home, I enjoy cooking a wide range of foods and recently got back into knitting.
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