Certificate in Pharma Challenges & Opportunities

The Pharma Challenges and Opportunities Certificate delivers industry knowledge and soft skills that pharma CEOs identified as important. This program will consist of four modules delivered by experts from industry as well as distinguished U of T faculty. It is designed to be highly interactive and include workshops, case studies, and networking opportunities.

This program will provide a deep understanding of the journey of a medicine from discovery through regulatory approval, access to the Canadian market and activities related to launching, marketing and selling. It will also cover the broader Canadian life sciences such as generics, vaccines and key future opportunities and challenges. Please note that there is a soft skills component to this program as well with sessions about effective communication, negotiation, persuasion and influence as part of modules 1, 2 and 3.

Online Modules and Learning Outcomes

Module 1 • Introduction to the industry • R&D • Regulatory
Affairs • Medical Affairs

Introduction to the industry, discovering and developing a new medicine and navigating the regulatory process to gain approval to market.

Module 2 • Canadian Drug Healthcare System • Market
Access • Public Policy

Overview of Canadian drug policy framework and processes for gaining market access for a new medicine. Understanding the stakeholders and their roles in public and private markets.

Module 3 • Launching • Marketing and Selling Best
Practice • Persuasion and Influence

Introduction to best practices in launching, marketing and selling pharmaceutical products in Canada.

Module 4 •  Vaccines •  Generics •  Biologics and Life Sciences
in Canada

A look at the broader life sciences ecosystem in Canada and future opportunities and challenges

Format and Dates

One Thursday a month over 4 months, online. 
(Toronto time, EST)

Dates: Fall 2024

Certificate Fee

Individual registrations - $2,000 + HST / participant. Group registrations of 2 or more - $1,650 + HST / participant.

The fee includes all four modules and course materials.

Who Should Apply

  • Professionals already in pharma and interested in broadening industry knowledge to improve their cross-functional contribution
  • International pharma professionals new to Canada  
  • Recent graduates interested in entering the pharma industry




Faculty and Instructors 

U of T faculty and key industry partners who taught in the program during the Fall 2022 session:

  • Christine Lennon - General Manager, Incyte Biosciences Canada
  • Amyn Sayani - Director, Medical Evidence, AstraZeneca Canada
  • Leslie Madden - Head of Regulatory Affairs, Canada, Moderna
  • Shurjeel Choudhri - Senior Vice President and Head, Medical and Scientific Affairs, Bayer HealthCare
  • Rafael Chiuzi - Assistant Professor, Organizational Behaviour & HR Management, Department of Management, U of T, Mississauga
  • Christine MossaSenior Director, Regulatory Affairs, Reimbursement and Value Access, Ipsen Canada
  • Angela Diano - Executive Director, Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency Canada Inc.
  • Ajay Bhatia - Associate Director of Global Marketing, Oncology New Products, Astellas Pharma US
  • Dorothy Czylyski - President- NFA Health
  • Bruce Seet - Head of Medical Affairs (Canada) at Novavax
  • Jordan Berman - Vice President, Global Corporate Affairs, Business Transformation and Strategic Planning, Apotex
  • Jason Field - President & CEO, Life Sciences Ontario
  • Leigh Revers - Associate Professor Chemistry, Director Master of Biotechnology Program, U of T, Mississauga
  • Duncan Jones - Director, ICUBE, U of T, Mississauga
  • Rav Kumar - Special Advisor to the Vice-President & Principal, the Centre for Medicinal Chemistry, Assistant Professor, U of T, Mississauga

Past Participant Spotlight

Stanley Headshot

 This program helped me gain a better understanding of the high-level gaps and future direction of the pharmaceutical industry, especially within the medical affairs realm. I engaged with senior executives in pharma and U of T faculty members who shared practical experiences. I am pleased with the networking platform this program presented and I hope these relationships will be sustained.

Stanley C. Meribe
Senior Medical Writer
INVIVO - a Red Nucleus Company

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