1 hr 5 min

Dr. Moira Gilchrist - PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences Ordinarily Extraordinary - Conversations with women in STEM

    • Science

Dr. Moira Gilchrist is the Vice President of Strategic and Scientific Communications at Philip Morris International (PMI). She has a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences and in 2006, came to PMI to help launch the company’s smoke-free products, which were developed as better alternatives to cigarettes for adult smokers who would otherwise continue to smoke. Her journey to PMI was as personal as it was professional: as a smoker, she understood the potential for these better alternatives to become a breakthrough for smokers like herself who would otherwise not quit.

Episode Notes
Moira shares her personal and professional journey of getting a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences, starting her career in cancer research and then working in the pharmaceutical industry before joining PMI – which as she will share in this episode – was not a place she ever thought she’d work. Today, she leads a team whose job it is to translate the robust science behind the company’s smoke-free alternatives into information policymakers and the public can easily understand.
Ok…so getting beyond the tobacco conversation…Moira shares how she got interested in becoming a pharmacist – almost left her major – and then had a class in industrial pharmacy that redirected her and led to her getting a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences. We talk about the importance of developing communication skills and how having the backs of other women in the rooms we are in can have a big impact.
Music used in the podcast: Higher Up, Silverman Sound Studio
Acronyms, Definitions, and Fact Check
Women’s share of jobs in the largest STEM category—Computers and Math— decreased from 44% in 1990 to 27% in 2018 and women hold the fewest share of STEM jobs in the Engineering and Surveying sector at 16%(https://extension.ucsd.edu/getattachment/community-and-research/center-for-research-and-evaluation/Accordion/Research-Reports-and-Publications/Women-in-STEM-Workforce-Index-FINAL-for-CRE-7_22_20.pdf.aspx?lang=en-US)
In 2020, there were almost 6.6 million female scientists and engineers in the EU, 254 500 more than in 2019, accounting for 41% of total employment in science and engineering. By sector, women were underrepresented in manufacturing (where only 22% of scientists and engineers were female), while there was more of a gender balance in the services sector (46%). Among the EU Member States, the proportion of female scientists and engineers varied widely in 2020, ranging from 52% in Lithuania, Portugal and Denmark to 30% in Finland and 31% in Hungary. (https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/products-eurostat-news/-/edn-20220211-2)
"Lean In" by Sheryl Sandberg. https://leanin.org/book
Neuro Linguistic Programming - a pseudoscientific approach to communication, personal development, and psychotherapy created by Richard Bandler and John Grinder in California, United States, in the 1970s. (Wikipedia)

Dr. Moira Gilchrist is the Vice President of Strategic and Scientific Communications at Philip Morris International (PMI). She has a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences and in 2006, came to PMI to help launch the company’s smoke-free products, which were developed as better alternatives to cigarettes for adult smokers who would otherwise continue to smoke. Her journey to PMI was as personal as it was professional: as a smoker, she understood the potential for these better alternatives to become a breakthrough for smokers like herself who would otherwise not quit.

Episode Notes
Moira shares her personal and professional journey of getting a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences, starting her career in cancer research and then working in the pharmaceutical industry before joining PMI – which as she will share in this episode – was not a place she ever thought she’d work. Today, she leads a team whose job it is to translate the robust science behind the company’s smoke-free alternatives into information policymakers and the public can easily understand.
Ok…so getting beyond the tobacco conversation…Moira shares how she got interested in becoming a pharmacist – almost left her major – and then had a class in industrial pharmacy that redirected her and led to her getting a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences. We talk about the importance of developing communication skills and how having the backs of other women in the rooms we are in can have a big impact.
Music used in the podcast: Higher Up, Silverman Sound Studio
Acronyms, Definitions, and Fact Check
Women’s share of jobs in the largest STEM category—Computers and Math— decreased from 44% in 1990 to 27% in 2018 and women hold the fewest share of STEM jobs in the Engineering and Surveying sector at 16%(https://extension.ucsd.edu/getattachment/community-and-research/center-for-research-and-evaluation/Accordion/Research-Reports-and-Publications/Women-in-STEM-Workforce-Index-FINAL-for-CRE-7_22_20.pdf.aspx?lang=en-US)
In 2020, there were almost 6.6 million female scientists and engineers in the EU, 254 500 more than in 2019, accounting for 41% of total employment in science and engineering. By sector, women were underrepresented in manufacturing (where only 22% of scientists and engineers were female), while there was more of a gender balance in the services sector (46%). Among the EU Member States, the proportion of female scientists and engineers varied widely in 2020, ranging from 52% in Lithuania, Portugal and Denmark to 30% in Finland and 31% in Hungary. (https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/products-eurostat-news/-/edn-20220211-2)
"Lean In" by Sheryl Sandberg. https://leanin.org/book
Neuro Linguistic Programming - a pseudoscientific approach to communication, personal development, and psychotherapy created by Richard Bandler and John Grinder in California, United States, in the 1970s. (Wikipedia)

1 hr 5 min

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