Biotech Career Conversation

Dec 8, 2023, 1:00 – 2:00 AM

Figuring out a career in Biotech, Healthcare or Life Sciences? Come join this event and listen to people that have accomplished big things in this space.

About this event

This Biotech Career Conversation will be a unique event for BYU students to consider different career paths in the biotech industry. We'll hear from Ben Pope, Britlyn Orgill, Del Afonso, and John Wigg about their careers, their educational background, and their best tips for making a great career in this space.


Ben Pope is the Chief Scientific Officer at Mellicell, a biotechnology company founded in 2020 to cure obesity and type 2 diabetes. MelliCell uses proprietary technology to recreate human fat cells and test therapies for the diseases. After earning his bachelor's degree from BYU in Genetics and Biotechnology, Ben completed a PhD program at Florida State University in Cell and Molecular Biology and postdoctoral studies at Harvard University with a focus on organ-on-a-chip and stem cell technologies.

Britlyn Orgill is an attending anesthesiologist at Massachusetts General Hospital. She majored in Biology (B.S. 2011) at BYU, attended the Medical College of Wisconsin (M.D. 2015), and returned to her home city of Boston to complete her anesthesiology residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital at Harvard Medical School. She is an instructor at Harvard with an interest in medical simulation, where she teaches anesthesiology residents how to respond to crisis scenarios in the operating room. She is pursuing her master’s degree in health professions education at the MGH Institute of Health Professions. She co-founded the BYU Summer Research Internship program   and the BYU Medical Society.

Del Afonso is the Founder & CEO of Harmony Baby Nutrition, a food-science based company that is reshaping infant nutrition. Harmony is creating breast milk components using cutting-edge biotechnology to replace the need for cow’s milk in infant nutrition. Del has worked in the infant nutrition space for more than 20+ years, which as included creating numerous prototypes, performing clinical trials, and launching more than 30 successful innovative products. Del earned multiple undergraduate degrees and a master's in Food Science from Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais in Brazil, as well as an MBA degree from the MIT Sloan School of Management.

John Wigg is a Business Development Executive for Thermo Fisher Scientific. He's responsible for developing strategic business relationships with pharma and biotech companies, to help bring their therapies to patients. This includes autologous and allogenic cell therapy products from a variety of cell types. Before excelling in multiple roles at Thermo Fisher, John completed his undergraduate and master's studies at Lakehead University in Applied Bio-molecular Science and Chemistry, respectively.


  • Stephen Patterson


    Director of BD


  • Matthew Probst


    Board Member, BYU MS Boston Chapter

  • James Johnston

    Johnston Co.

    President, BYU MS Boston Chapter

  • Stephen Patterson


    Board Member, BYU MS Boston Chapter

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