Foundation Medicine was a proud contributing sponsor of the 18th annual Massachusetts Conference For Women, which took place in person on November 30, and online on December 1, 2022. Fifty Foundation Medicine employees joined the conversation at the conference, attending keynotes, seminars, workshops and networking sessions that focused on issues of importance to women in the workplace.
The mission of the Conferences For Women, “to promote, communicate and amplify the influence of women in the workplace and beyond,” aligns closely with Foundation Medicine’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts. The conversations shared at the conference offered a chance for employees to engage with other leaders in the Boston area and beyond, and to bring back with them new learnings and ideas for how to contribute to and build the intimate sense of belonging Foundation Medicine strives to create for every employee.
Meeral, Program Manager, Corporate Program Management Office, attended both days of the conference. “I was pleasantly surprised to see so many women, and some men, at the conference in support of their mission. The vibes were just amazing; the energy was through the roof,” she shared. “It was magical to see folks working together to further their shared mission and values, in person.”
“I sometimes feel like we live in a world where few have been exposed to the wins and losses of individuals, leaders, cultures and countries over time. Forums like the Massachusetts Conference For Women introduce us to these challenges, topics, thoughts and lifestyles we may have never discovered. I am confident each member who attended the Conference took away thoughts and actions they will implement and live by - all to make this world a better place for all of us to live in.”
Meeral was grateful not only for the opportunity to meet leaders and like-minded peers from other companies and organizations, but also for the chance to meet Foundation Medicine colleagues face to face. “I was a pandemic hire, so meeting coworkers that I work with via Zoom in person was awesome,” she shared.
Maggie, Senior Associate, Patient and Professional Partnerships, also attended both days of the conference. “There was so much energy and something special about coming together in person to celebrate women’s voices in the workplace,” she said.
“My favorite moment of the day was hearing Dr. Kissmekia Corbett speak. Dr. Corbett’s team at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) co-designed the COVID-19 vaccine that was eventually deployed to Moderna for a Phase 1 clinical trial. It was amazing to hear her speak about her career journey and experience developing the COVID-19 vaccine. The piece of her talk that resonated with me the most was her approach to ‘lead by listening first,’” Maggie shared.
Maggie attended the conference with a few teammates, but also enjoyed the chance to meet new colleagues from Foundation Medicine, and to interact in person with people she often collaborates with virtually.
Even for those who only attended the virtual part of the conference, the shared Slack channel created at Foundation Medicine provided a space for folks to come together to discuss speakers, share inspiring quotes and messages, and to connect in ways that they do not typically have the chance to. For Audra, Associate Director, Talent Branding, this was a highlight, creating that sense of camaraderie and connection with colleagues that ties in so deeply with the company’s efforts to foster belonging in the workplace.
“There are countless takeaways from this experience,” said Meeral. “Two quotes will forever live with me in my heart. ‘Adapt and the plan will write itself’ – José Andrés, and ‘You can leave something for people, or you can leave something in people- you pick your legacy’ – Viola Davis”