2023 SAPA Career Development Workshop

Career Growth in Turbulent Times – Use Empathy and Leadership to Guide Your Career Development


SAPA will be hosting an in-person career development workshop (CDW) on March 25th.

Please use On-Site Registration only when you are at the Front Desk on March 25th. 

SAPA member $15 (Early bird) $25 (Regular)
Nonmember $25 (Early bird) $35 (Regular)
SAPA student member $10
Student nonmember $15
On-Site Registration $50



This event presents a tremendous opportunity for graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and professionals of all levels of experience to expand their knowledge of empathy and leadership, which can prove invaluable to their career growth. Additionally, the parallel job fair offers participants the chance to explore various career options and network with potential employers within the biotech and pharmaceutical industries. Some of the industry’s most prominent companies, such as BMS and Merck (a complete list of sponsors can be found below), will host booths and directly communicate with talented individuals regarding job openings during the job fair. This is a rare and exciting opportunity not to be missed.

In addition, participating in the parallel discussion sessions, featuring accomplished leaders with diverse levels of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, also presents a unique opportunity to gain valuable insights and perspectives on navigating the industry and advancing one’s career. The two parallel sessions, each with four topics focused on empathy and leadership, also offer a diverse range of learning opportunities for participants. Additionally, a workshop on resume writing and LinkedIn profile creation will be available. Altogether, the CDW and job fair combination offers an excellent opportunity to network, learn, and grow professionally. Don’t miss out on this unparalleled chance to take your career to the next level.

Complete Brochure can be found by clicking on this link: 2023 SAPA CDW Brochure

Keynote Speakers:

Eric Hughes, PhD, MD, Executive VP Global R&D and Chief Medical Officer at Teva Pharmaceuticals

Title: Leading with Purpose, Empathy & Vision

Litao Zhang, PhD, Global head of Discovery Technologies and Molecular Pharmacology at the Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson.

Title: Follow your heart and never forget why you started!

Ben Freer, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychology, Fairleigh Dickson University

Steven Dranoff, PhD, Co-Founder, Center for Empathy Research and Training, Fairleigh Dickinson University

Title: Empathy in the Workplace: Opportunities, Challenges, and Successes


      Dr. Ben Freer                         Dr. Steven Dranoff


Afternoon Parallel Sessions:

  • Session A: Advance your career by focusing on leadership


Mr. Suraj Adiecha, MBA, Director of WW Cell Therapy Strategy, Breyanzi, BMS, Rutgers

Ms. Linda Caramichael, MS, Head of Environment and Sustainability, Teva Pharmaceuticals

Dr. Huabin Sun, MD, Senior Medical Director, Janssen Pharmaceuticals

Dr. Zhong Yun, PhD, Director in the Department of Early Drug Development, Legend Biotech USA Inc.

Abstract: Should you lead or be led?  What is your leadership style?  How can you use powers of influence?  Learn about these topics from leaders with different backgrounds and perspectives. 

  • Session B: Empathy Workshop with Professor Freer and Dr. Dranoff

Abstract: This workshop will describe CERT’s (Center for Empathy Research and Training) unique perspective on empathy and how it is implemented in the empathy training. We will utilize role plays to highlight the conflicts we encounter in the workplace, new ways to approach these conflicts, and common roadblocks that must be overcome in order to foster the language and culture of empathy within an organization.  Finally, the training aims to engage individuals to become proactive change agents for organizational, and eventually societal, transformation.

  • Session C: Explore different career paths


Dr. Feng Chen, PhD, Chief Business Officer, Accutar BioTech

Dr. Yang Qiu, PhD, CSO, Duality Biologics

Dr. Hao Shen, PhD, MBA, Biotech Equity Analyst, Bank of America

Dr. Yuan Xue, PhD, SVP, Regulatory Affairs, Accutar Biotechnology

Abstract: Do you feel that you are stuck in your current job? Do you want to find a different career? This session will focus on exploring alternate paths you can use to advance to your career. The panelists will share their career experiences. Join this session if you know what is on the other side of the fence.

  • Session D: Ace the transition to industry through self-awareness and networking


Dr. Qing Chang, PhD, Research Scientist, Creative Biolabs

Ms. Fiona Cui, MS, Talent Acquisition Partner, Cellarity at Flagship Pioneering

Dr. Yongle Pang, PhD, Discovery DMPK Bioanalyst, GSK

Ms. Cathy Tang, MS, PhD candidate at Princeton University, Incoming Associate at McKinsey & Company

Abstract: Do you know what career opportunities are available beyond pursuing a post doc degree? Do you want to learn how to land your dream job through networking? Have you wondered what changes you should make to your resume, so it stands out in the top 10%? What are the critical skills you need to master after you start your first job? Join this session to learn from panelists. The session will end with a networking exercise so you can practice your new skills in real time.


Time: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, March 25, 2023

Location: Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School,

     675 Hoes Lane West, Piscataway, NJ 08854