Matching students with experienced professionals to foster personal and professional development in an informal setting
The Synapse Mentorship Program
The program runs from October 2020 - May 2021 where you and your assigned mentor will meet 4-6 times and work on several topics according to both of your schedules. Intertwined your meetings, Synapse will organize three events spaced out throughout the cycle.
If you join our program, you can tailor it to your needs. You can either focus on your personal development, or perhaps on your professional growth. Whatever you decide to work on, it will be together with a mentor with a life science background like yours. They will challenge your perspectives, guide your decisions and let you tap into their experience and knowledge in an informal and safe environment.
Mentorship Program Timeline
The matching process
You will apply the mentorship program with a short motivational letter answering the two questions found in the section “how to apply” and your CV.
Furthermore, you will have to choose a number of words that describe you and your interest within life science the best. We have already produced a list of words to choose from – which will be evident in the application form. As we only have a limited amount of mentors we will not be able to match all our applicants.
Remember that our Synapse Mentorship Program is not a way into the companies that our mentors represent.
For more information about each mentor go to the bottom of this site.
Who can apply
You are eligible to enter the program if:
- You are a 3rd-year Bachelor student or have at least 1 year left in your master’s program and you’re not going on exchange during the mentorship program.
- You are enrolled in a life science program at a university in the Copenhagen area (Lund University included).
- You are available for the kick-off event. The event will be held in Copenhagen on November 8th.
How to apply
When applying we ask for your CV (maximum 2 pages) and a motivational letter where you answer the following two questions (max. 300 words per questions):
- What is your motivation to become a mentee in the Synapse Mentorship Program?
- What are your current educational/career plans and how do you believe a mentor could help you achieve your specific goals?
In the application form you also need to pick 7 words that you find the most interesting. We will use these words to find the best match for you.
KMP+ House of Mentoring
KMP+ House of Mentoring has since 2000 designed and delivered state-of-the-art mentoring programmes based on in-depth research and good practice. Together with the client, we ensure that development activities are relevant, meaningful to the individual, and clearly connect to strategic objectives, thus increasing the organisation’s ability to deliver results.
Benefits of working with KMP+ House of Mentoring
- Ensuring one approach, one common language and common understanding of mentoring in the organisation.
- Minimizing the cost of “trial and error”.
- State-of-the-art mentor/mentee-training with innovative, engaging and solid tools.
- Providing concepts and tools that motivate employees to invest in their own learning.
- 20+ years of experience designing and delivering mentoring programmes.
KMP+ House of Mentoring supports the mentoring programme at Synapse
Since 2017, KMP+ House of Mentoring has facilitated Synapse’s kick-off event by using the engaging and innovative concept Mentor+Game™ to train the mentors and mentees in the skills of modern mentoring. The kick-off event enhances the learning experience of mentors and mentees and ensure that all mentors and mentees within the Synapse Mentoring Programme are provided a common language and tools for their collaboration.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to book a meeting with a senior consultant to explore how mentoring could make a difference in your organisation.
Kirsten M. Poulsen is the founder of KMP+ House of Mentoring and an international expert in the field of mentoring. She is the author and co-author of several books, articles and is a widely used speaker at international and national conferences.
MENTORS OF 2020/2021
Beatrice Yang obtained her M.Sc.Eng in Biotechnology, Pharmaceuticals from Lund University, followed by 2 years of clinical research in Diabetes & Endocrinology at Lund University in associated with Skåne University Hospital.
In 2010, Beatrice joined the pharmaceutical industry in Novo Nordisk’s graduate program and have held various positions across the value chain – such as Regulatory affairs, Product Supply and Medical affairs – both HQ- and regionally-based in Denmark, China and Switzerland.
In 2018, Beatrice joined Lundbeck, a pharmaceutical company focused on brain disorders, as a Senior Specialist in Regulatory Science & Advocacy. Her role is highly cross-functional and includes strategic analyses to support drug development; as well as advocacy activities, such as collaboration with other companies in public-private-partnerships.
Christiane has worked as a business analyst, process consultant and project manager in IT-projects in big multinational companies. From that she has gained experiences with how to navigate in complex environments spanning departments and country borders. She has equipped her ‘consultant toolbox’ with key project management skills and know of the fundamentals for how to make projects successful, and has learned how to prioritise time and tasks as optimal as possible.
Dorte started her career as an M.Sc. of Molecular Biomedicine in Lundbeck Research. Her work entailed both in vivo and in vitro lab work along with design of experiments, analysis of data and literature searches thereby ensuring project coordination, proper reporting, presentations and the delivery of results on time.
She then moved into Clinical Operations managing clinical trial activities for phase III global trials. A job with a high focus on project management including stakeholder management, both internally in the company and externally towards vendors and collaborators.
At Lundbeck she is a part of the Works Council as representative of the employees and act as Chairman of the European Works Council. This links to her involvement in PharmaDanmark (Union for Life Science Professionals) where she is a member of the Executive Committee.
Digital Health has become a new health care revolution that empowers users to make better-informed decisions about their health. Holti works to co-create digital health solutions that are safe, effective and commercially viable in collaboration with Software Developers, Medical Doctors, Quality, Commercial and Market Access stakeholders. He has a strong scientific & analytical background in molecular biomedicine, technology & regulatory affairs and experienced in health innovation, business creation, and bio-entrepreneurship.
MARK ANDREW HAMMOND
FUJILM Diosynth Biotechnologies is one of the leading Contract Delevelopment and Manufacturing Organizations (CDMO).
As a Program Manager in Manufacturing Sciences Mark is responsible for technical/scientific communication with customers with whom they make pharmarceutical products (monoclonal antibodies) for commercial use. He has been in the company for six years including previous roles as cell culture scientist and QA specialist/delegated QP.
He is knowledgeable about large scale biopharmaceutical antibody production, both the scientific aspects as well as the business part.
His educational background is a PhD in Innate Immunology and a Master’s degree in Biomedicine from University of Southern Denmark and Roskilde University (Bachelor’s)
Originally planning to take the traditional academia route following his PhD, Nikolaj got an opportunity working in a privately-owned contract research organization while applying for post doc grants. It was a small start-up, so they faced many of the challenges associated with entrepreneurship, requiring one to learn a very diverse skill set. They have grown considerable in size and Nikolaj is now doing more management-oriented work, making sure that scientific studies are finished on time, but still have hands-on time with scientific work.
PATRICK NASCIMENTO MELSTED
With a background in biotechnology coupled with business administration and bio-entrepreneurship, Patrick works to bridge science and business. He is passionate about science and sustainability, and work in a setting where he can leverage his scientific and commercial competencies to bring natural solutions to the world. This he achieves in Chr. Hansen where he has a central part in ensuring that they deliver natural solutions to market needs, especially within food industry, with key focus on UN sustainable development goals.
JEPPE CHRISTIAN MOURITSEN
With an educational background as a pharmaceutical scientist from Copenhagen University, Jeppe went abroad to Zürich, Switzerland at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology to do his graduate studies and a postdoc. He next joined Novozymes in Denmark working to implement custom-built mass spectrometry-based methods to study in solution enzyme dynamics in R&D. After 4.5 years further working as an innovator across research, business development, and technical service, he now calls himself an entrepreneur. With his co-founder he spun out a venture collaborating with Novozymes to found and lead a separate pharmaceutical company Henlez based on enzyme technology to develop novel medical treatments for select skin diseases.
Sigrún graduated as a Medical Doctor from KU in June 2013. She is also a Biochemist, graduated in 2003 from the University of Iceland. She did research while she was in Med. School mostly within Dermatology. She has experience working as a Medical Doctor in different hospital departments; Internal Medicine, General Practice, Infectious Disease and Dermatology. Started working in the Pharmaceutical Industry in 2018, at LEO Pharma, Medical Department. Here she works with research and development of medications that they already have on the market and also on medications that are under development.
Nidhi is a medical expert on clinical trials (phase 1 to 4) doing medical monitoring, preparing medical monitoring plans, and advising on ongoing medical issues in the trial. she collaborates with CROs, CRAs and investigators from all over the world for successful running of clinical trials. She is also involved in sharing of scientific and medical knowledge within one or more defined projects and therapeutic areas within Leo as well as outside. She worked on a psoriasis phase 4 trial and a paediatric development program and is now working on a atopic dermatitis phase 1 and a long term safety study. She contributes to the generation of trial outlines, trial definition documents, clinical trial protocols, clinical regulatory documents, etc. and presenting them to the stakeholders.
Martin became a researcher in medicinal chemistry because he has always been fascinated by studying the interplay of chemical matter with biological systems. Martin studied chemistry at the University of Leipzig in Germany, with stays at Monash University in Australia and ENSCM in France. During his PhD with Manfred Jung at the Albert-Ludwigs-University in Freiburg, Germany, he started his research endeavors in epigenetic drug discovery. After a first postdoctoral research and teaching position back in Leipzig with Finn Hansen, he joined the Center for Biopharmaceuticals at the University of Copenhagen as an independently funded visiting postdoc in April 2018, where he continues to research chemical tools against disease-causing epigenetic proteins.
JENS ROSENGREN DAUGAARD
With a strong scientific background from University of Copenhagen (Ph.D. & Post Doc), Jens moved on to the pharma/biotech industry as a drug developer where he gained 20+ years of experience, including 10 years at Novo Nordisk A/S and 11 Years at Zealand Pharma A/S. He is experienced in Project Manager and in Business Development, Licensing and Alliance Management. Jens has good and solid technical skills in the areas of valuation, commercial assessment, market research, brand and disease knowledge, strategic marketing, scientific and regulatory assessment, scouting of pipeline assets and acquisition targets.
After graduating with a master’s degree in chemistry from DTU, Eva worked as a consultant for Bain & Company for 2.5 years, where she learned about business issues and strategy, and developed countless slides, frameworks and excel models. She now works for the world’s leading manufacturer of human milk oligosaccharides, a key ingredient in breast milk sold for infant formula and other health purposes. Eva’s main responsibilities working at Glycom is commercial maturation of their product pipeline, and she partakes in various marketing and sales projects. Eva finds pipeline maturation super exciting as she get to focus on one of the most fun issues: Translation of technology to something beneficial for the world.
Christian has a Bachelor Degree in Molecular Biology & Biochemistry, a Master Degree in Biochemistry and PhD in Biophysics. He started his career during a bachelor paid internship liposomal cancer drugs. This led to researching and characterizing more lipid interactions using biophysical tools. From his bachelor work he received a Marie Curie Fellowship to do a MSc and PhD in Helsinki looking at protein lipid interactions. This led to learning more about protein structure in Denmark during a Post-doc period and how potentially specific lipids could interact with specific proteins to potentially act as an agonist. He is currently developing new types of colloids and lipids to develop the future of food and potential therapeutics at his current job.
Cecilie graduated from UCPH with a M.Sc. in Molecular Biomedicine in 2017. Two months after, she joined HERAX as a consultant. HERAX combine R&D operational knowledge, technologies and project methodology to optimize processes and implementing IT systems for pharmaceutical companies. During her time at HERAX, she has worked for several Global pharmaceutical companies, and has undergone a steep learning curve. She is currently leading two major projects as a Project Manager for one of their clients. In addition, she has become certified in PRINCE2, SCRUM, CDISC and GAMP5, as well as taken several courses within Clinical Development.
Carlos recently obtained his PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of Copenhagen. His work in the group of Prof. Christian A. Olsen consisted in the development of peptide-based tools for the investigation of epigenetic enzymes termed histone deacetylases or HDACs. His Chemistry background (5-year degree from the University of Zaragoza, Spain) helped him get started rapidly with the synthesis of unnatural amino acids and peptides, and the knowledge he acquired during my master studies (MSc Drug Discovery from the University of Surrey, UK) proved essential for understanding the biological significance of in vitro assays moving forward. In addition, Carlos collaborated with molecular biologists at the University of Copenhagen and neuroscientists at Harvard University in order to learn how to perform cell culture and carry out ex vivo testing of HDAC inhibitors. As a result, he is currently in the process of publishing the 4th first-author manuscript from his PhD studies.
After graduating as a civil engineer within biotechnology from DTU, Benedikte spent the first 7 years of her career in basic/clinical cancer research at the Finsen Laboratory (Rigshospitalet). She hereafter moved on to Dako/Agilent Technologies, where she supported the production of reagents for cancer diagnostics. In Benedikte’s current role as a scientific manager in the Medical Affairs department at Coloplast, she works with clinical documentation of medical devices, thereby uniting some of her biggest interests – communication, health sciences and cross-functional collaboration, which have been central elements throughout her career.
Kristian Strømgaard graduated (PhD) from the Royal Danish School of Pharmacy (1999), with part of the studies carried out at the Danish pharmaceutical company H. Lundbeck A/S and previous studies at University College London. He did his postdoctoral training at Columbia University (USA) and was subsequently appointed assistant professor at University of Copenhagen, and thereafter promoted to full professor in chemical biology in 2006. His research spans chemistry and biology with focus on protein‐protein interactions, including peptide and protein engineering. In 2014 he was appointed Director of Center for Biopharmaceuticals at University of Copenhagen and in 2016 to 2017 he was a visiting professor at Harvard Medical School. He is cofounder of the biotechnology company Avilex Pharma.
Alexander obtained a BSc and an MSc degree in Computational Biology from Saarland University, Germany. In 2017, he obtained a PhD degree in RNA bioinformatics from the University of Copenhagen and worked for 1.5 years as a Postdoc at the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Protein Research.
He joined Novo Nordisk as a Data Scientist in February 2019 and is working in early R&D. In his day-to-day work, he drive advanced data analytics projects, works towards a better utilization of diverse experimental research data, and is contributing to in-house education initiatives focused on data science and machine learning.
He believes that his strong academic background is a powerful enabler on his career path but he also believes that following his interests outside academic research opened a much wider range of career options.
ANNE KATHRINE ISAGER
After graduating from Aarhus University, Anne decided that she would rather work with clinical development than in the laboratory. In her first job she worked for two years at the Danish Medicines Agency approving new clinical trials in Denmark. Currently, Anne is working in the regulatory affairs department at Orphazyme A/S preparing and coordinating submissions and interactions with authorities (mainly FDA and EMA). Since Orphazyme is working with rare diseases, they have many interactions with the authorities, as they also wish to support small companies develop drugs for rare diseases. Anne works with focus on drug development and clinical trials with the goal of getting our product approved.
KAMILA KATARZYNA LIPINSKA
Kamila is a professional specializing in clinical trials with 5 years’ experience in project management. She possesses a background in Laboratory Medicine and Bio-Business. That gives her a deep understanding of research and stakeholder management. She worked for 4 years at AstraZeneca, which is a global pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical company that has a portfolio of products for major disease areas including cancer, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, respiratory and inflammation. She had 3 roles there in the Global Clinical Operations, including being a part of the team that launched Lynparza, a PARP inhibitor that became an FDA-approved targeted therapy for ovarian cancer. Currently, Kamila is growing in her new role as a Global Clinical Project Manager at LEO Pharma.
DANIEL ELENIUS MADSEN
Daniel holds a MSc and PhD in biomedicine, and did a STAR post doc with Novo Nordisk A/S (Novo) within research. He spent four years in haemophilia research at Novo, working as a scientist and project manager. To broaden his professional profile, he moved from research at Novo to development at LEO Pharma A/S (LEO). At LEO he works within pharmacology, where a central task is establishment of biomarker packages on clinical trials from phase 1 to 3. His assignments are very diverse, and he collaborates with colleagues across the entire R&D organization.
Emil has a Bachelor in Sport Science and a Master’s in Human Biology. He started as a PhD student after his studies in the field of inheritance and reproduction, taking part in several clinical studies at Hvidovre Hospital and Rigshospitalet. During his studies he have started a company, ExSeed Health, where he currently works as the Scientific Officer. In that work, his company and he have been going from an early idea to raising more than 1 M USD in external capital as well as getting a medical device through European regulation and on market in just 2 years.
William is a British Expatriate and Bioinformatics MSc, working on developing the machine learning capabilities within organizations and passionate about the operationalization and practical use of machine learning, especially within healthcare and the life sciences. As well as this, he has been part of a small team building up new services/offerings in his own company (mostly around machine learning) in NNIT as a corporate entrepreneur. Aside from his day job, he is becoming increasingly interested in projects working on the UN SDGs, especially numbers 3 & 9.
Robert is currently a research scientist in the department of Fungal Discovery at Novozymes where he orchestrates the company’s efforts within next generation sequencing of internal bacterial and fungal strains by leading this platform for all Novozymes’ industries. Before joining Novozymes in 2009, he did a interdisciplinary research project in Italy for his M.Sc. research project at a joint unit of the University of Gdańsk and the Medical University of Gdańsk. After this, Robert chose to pursue a PhD in Neurosciences at Uppsala University and became a post-doctoral fellow in molecular evolution at Tokyo Institute of Technology where he worked with collection and filtration of regions of the human genome possessing conserved non-coding transposable elements in parallel with teaching and inspiring Japanese high school students.
Laura is a scientist by background currently exploring the business side of Life-Sciences. She graduated in 2019 as PhD in Synthetic Biology by the University of Copenhagen. As BD Partner she uses her knowledge about biotechnology to secure high-revenue business opportunities for AGC Biologics. In her previous academic research, she focussed on developing photosynthetic bacteria to convert CO2 into aromatic molecules widely used by the food and pharma industries.
As a biotechnologist with a master in business administration, Christina bridges life science, business development, and analytics. She has been part of entrepreneurial technology ventures since commencing her studies, working with, analytics, sales, technology development, and business development.
The last two and half years, she has been with Accelerace Management A/S, in a position combining analytics and coaching start-ups.
She is always part of initiatives in the Danish life science ecosystem latest, REBBLS, a networking organization focusing on young biotech entrepreneurs in Denmark.
Jacob Steglich-Andersen sit as Global Pricing Manager in Food Cultures and Enzymes in Chr. Hansen. Jacob started his career in Chr. Hansen as Global Marketing Analyst where he spearheaded the global roll-out of a new market intelligence platform. In he’s current role, Jacob heads up the pricing activities in FC&E, driving market and trend analysis, and develops improved processes securing that Chr. Hansen pricing activities are in line with the overall company strategy.
OUR MENTORS WORK AT
Novo Nordisk A/S
Chr. Hansen A/S
Chr. Hansen is a global bioscience company that develops natural solutions for the food, nutritional, pharmaceutical and agricultural industries.
We develop and produce cultures, enzymes, probiotics and natural colors for a rich variety of foods, confectionery, beverages, dietary supplements, animal feed, and plant protection. Our product innovation is based on around 40,000 microbial strains – we like to refer to them as “good bacteria.”
Our solutions enable food manufacturers to produce more with less – while also reducing the use of chemicals and other synthetic additives – which makes our products highly relevant in today’s world. We have been delivering value to our partners – and, ultimately, end consumers worldwide – for more than 145 years. We are proud that more than 1 billion people consume products containing our natural ingredients every day.
University of Copenhagen
We are passionate people building winning teams with our customers. With deep roots in the pharmaceutical industry, we supply services that meet the highest requirements for quality, security and standardization. Read more about our quality and security.
NNIT is one of Denmark’s leading consultancies in IT development, implementation and operations. For over a decade, we have applied the latest advances in technology to make software development, business processes and communication significantly more effective. Read about our values and culture.
NNIT’s service offerings include advising, building, implementing, managing and supporting IT solutions and operating IT systems for customers. In 2018 our revenue stood at DKK 3 billion. Read more about our life sciences services and customers.
Today, NNIT has approximately 3,300 employees – of which approximately half work outside the borders of Denmark – in China, the Czech Republic, the Philippines, Switzerland, Germany and in the US. Read about our history here.
Leo Pharma is an independent, research-based pharmaceutical company. The company develops, manufactures and markets pharmaceutical drugs to dermatologic and thrombotic patients in more than 100 countries globally. To realise their vision of becoming the preferred dermatology care partner improving people’s lives around the world, they are expanding into new regions and markets, reaching more patients and societies with drugs and therapies that address unmet medical needs. Leo Pharma has its own sales forces in 61 countries and employs around 5,000 employees worldwide. The company is headquartered in Denmark and is wholly owned by the Leo Foundation.
Coloplast develops products and services that make life easier for people with very personal and private medical conditions. Working closely with the people who use our products, we create solutions that are sensitive to their special needs. We call this intimate healthcare. Our business includes Ostomy Care, Continence Care, Wound & Skin Care and Interventional Urology. We operate globally, and our organisation is about 11,000 people strong
Accelerace is one of the world’s top 10 seed accelerators. Since 2008 Accelerace has spotted, trained and invested in more than 500 of the most promising Danish and international startups and growth companies. 88% of the companies are still on the market today.
As part of the national Scale-up Denmark initiative Accelerace is scaling up startups within tech, foodtech, cleantech, life sciences and welfare technologies through guidance and mentoring from skilled serial entrepreneurs, camps and network.
Accelerace has invested in more than 69 promising startups, who have been through the Accelerace program and have started partnerships with Maersk, Novo Nordisk Foundation, Arla, Foss, NRGI, Business Lolland-Falster, Bang & Olufsen, SE, Endesa & Enel.
Accelerace is also organizing the Nordic NOME (Nordic Mentor Network for Entrepreneurship) mentor network for life science startups. Reach us at email@example.com
Dawn provides life-changing digital health therapies driving improved patient outcomes beyond the pill. We deliver strategic consulting and develop innovative digital health solutions in close collaboration with the pharmaceutical, medical device, and biotech industries.
We envision a connected healthcare industry that efficienctly develops individualized treatments for patients and empowers practitioners to choose and manage the right treatments.
As an ISO13485:2016 certified developer of regulated digital health products, Dawn delivers value throughout the entire project lifecycle from concept and launch, to ongoing maintenance, support, and user acquisition.
Lundbeck is a global pharmaceutical company specialized in brain diseases. For more than 70 years, we have been at the forefront of neuroscience research. We are tirelessly dedicated to restoring brain health, so every person can be their best.
An estimated 700 million people worldwide are living with brain diseases and far too many suffer due to inadequate treatment, discrimination, a reduced number of working days, early retirement and other unnecessary consequences. Every day, we strive for improved treatment and a better life for people living with brain diseases – we call this Progress in Mind.
Despite the challenges, Lundbeck remains steadfast in our commitment to deliver innovation that patients need. We work tirelessly to advance neuroscience, develop new and innovative treatments, and support patient communities – all with the aim of restoring brain health and transforming the lives of the millions of people living with a brain disease. Not only does the burden of brain diseases demand action now, it also demands expertise and courage. We know that to get radically different results, we need to pursue radically different approaches.
Our approximately 5,000 employees in more than 50 countries are engaged in the entire value chain throughout research, development, production, marketing, and sales. Our pipeline consists of several R&D programs and our products are available in more than 100 countries. We have research centers in Denmark and California and our production facilities are located in Denmark, France, and Italy.