Posted by: Audrey Erbes | August 20, 2011

Handling Back-to-School Jitters Plus Upcoming Events


The next two weeks appear to offer fewer opportunities for life science programs and networking as organizations adjust to absence of potential attendees this time of year as individuals attempt to get some late summer R&R before the “rush” of the new fall academic and business year. Families are getting their offspring ready for the school and others are wrestling with the meaning of the roller coaster financial markets or facing the transition challenges anew. But there still are some events for those of us in the Bay Area to stimulate our minds and expose us to new ideas to prepare us for the challenges we face.

We are in the midst of lots of uncertainty on all fronts and we need to take a deep breath to get psyched up for the “new normal.” The movement from reliance on the big industry companies for employment or funding to one of dynamic change is unnerving but must be dealt with. Even the FDA is feeling the jitters as the Congressional House lowered its budget by over 11% for the coming year vs. 2011.

Everyone would agree we have more responsibilities and more difficulties in achieving innovation and successful commercialization but can’t count on or expect additional resources. Our skills and resources within our community will be tested for adaptation and ability to meet the challenges. We will need to do more with less.

There’s always reading one can do to help replenish the knowledge base and, hopefully, members of your network with whom you can independently meet for stimulating conversation and support. It’s a time I personally turn to reconsider my own “business plan” and rechart my path. I just downloaded the 2011 Ernst and Young Beyond Borders free report from their website and look forward to good read this coming week.

Here are this coming weeks events to consider with my comments:

  • BioCentury TV Today, Viewable after Sunday Morning, August 21, 2011; Topic: “Biotech into Pharma: Living on Both Sides of the Fence;” Speaker: Exclusive Interview with Dr. Paul Stoffels, Worldwide Chairman, Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson (Opportunity to consider the challenges facing Big Pharma)
  • Bio2Device Group, Tuesday Morning, Aug. 23, 2011; Topic: “Online Virtual Environments for Healthcare Professionals’ Training;” Speaker: Parvati Dev, PhD, President, Innovation in Learning, Inc., CliniSpace (New uses of IT technology in our field and chance to network at no cost in great venue)
  • UCB Extension Open House at New Belmont Center, Aug. 24-25, 2011; Event: UC Berkeley Extension Belmont Open House (a new location for applied knowledge courses for industry professionals within reach of both South San Francisco and South Bay companies and residents, in addition to Berkeley and San Francisco sites)
  • ASQ, Wednesday Evening, Aug. 24, 2011; Topic: “V&V 101 – Getting Started with Design Verification and Validation for Medical Devices;” Featured FDA Speaker: Aaron Joseph, Systems Engineer/Validation Engineer at Integrated Compliance Engineering; Moderator: Ari Kay, Manufacturing Engineer, Varian Medical Systems (access to specific skill information for medical device practitioners)
  • BioE2E Summer Mixer, Wednesday Evening, Aug. 24, 2011; Topic: Summer Mixer (return of favorite industry event and comeback of a BioE2E organizational program which we’ve missed in the past few years)
  • UCSC Extension, Wednesday Evening, Aug. 24, 2011; Topic: ”Clinical Trials, Regulatory Affairs, and Medical Devices Program Overview” (chance to hear about educational opportunities to sharpen the saw of knowledge skills in South Bay at free event at Santa Clara site)
  • HBA, Thursday Evening, August 25, 2011; Topic: “Executive Presentation Skills Training;” Speaker: Diane West, President of 2Connect (another specific skill training for professionals)
I’ve attached the full list of Audrey’s Picks for the week of Aug. 21st and through October which you can download by right clicking on highlighted title.



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