Viviana Wilches

Clinical Development Manager, GSK
Class of 2006


Since graduating from the M.Biotech program in 2006, Viviana has progressed her career within Clinical Development at GlaxoSmithKline and is presently a Clinical Development Manager, where she is responsible for overseeing and managing the operationalization of clinical trials. Together with the data management lead and project physician lead, Viviana ensures all the countries participating in the clinical trials have received appropriate training and have the required materials to conduct the study efficiently at their respective clinical trials centres. She is currently involved in the infectious disease portfolio and is overseeing and early phase HIV study and a late phase malaria study.

Viviana pursued her M.Biotech internship at GSK and was hired after the completion of her first year. Over the first five years within Clinical Development in Canada, Viviana has managed a number of high profile and large scale trials that were of major importance to the organization. Following the successes in Clinical Development, she was selected for an opportunity to complete a six-month volunteer secondment with the Canadian Cancer Society’s policy and Advocacy department. For the duration of this project, Viviana had to create the resources and build their capabilities in regards to personalized medicine and the impact on Canadian cancer patients, paving the way for future advocacy in this area.

According to Viviana, the M.Biotech program offers and prepares students in ways that no other program does. The key skills learned during the program such as presentation skills and teamwork ethics helped Viviana excel in her career. In her role as a Clinical Development Manager, a key responsibility included training country staff and physicians on the protocol for studies. The presentation skills refined during her M.Biotech program gave Viviana the confidence to host effective training sessions. Having constantly working within team environments, the collaborations and teamwork presented during the program has allowed her to effectively communicate with team partners to achieve set goals.

Viviana’s advice for new students to the M.Biotech program is to have an open mind and take the next two years as a learning experience that will help them prepare for their future. Another element Viviana emphasizes is to remember to take initiative and step out of comfort zones. for one can never know what can be waiting on the other side.