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Mentor Comments for Rita Raman

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Fellow: Ritu Raman, MechE
Mentors: Greg Mouchka, Product Manager and Gwendolyn Spizz, Director of Biological R&D
Company: Rheonix 
Location: Ithaca, NY

Greg Mouchaka:

"Ritu was given a core technical problem to work on, as well as given the chance to participate in some other projects and activities that would give her a sense of the bigger/business picture. On the technical side, she was tasked with developing a process to quantitatively gauge how effectively a surface was functionalized for the covalent bonding of capture probes.  The research, development and documentation were all hers to do. 

On the business side, Ritu participated in board meetings and conference calls that dealt with the day to day operation and strategy of the company.  She participated in and contributed to critical analyses of competitors' products and work flows.  She got a taste of the regulatory hurdles an organization has to clear before receiving an FDA approval on a product.  She was involved in the process of drafting press releases.

Rita was very shy when she came in to interview and when she started on her first day.  However, once she felt a little more comfortable, she was able to work with the team to accomplish the goals that were set out for her.  It was a pretty drastic transformation.

Gwendolyn Spizz:

" Miss Raman spent 50% of her time working with the research scientists and engineers in the applications group at Rheonix. During this time she was exposed to the actual research and development work necessary towards preparing a molecular diagnostic medical device for FDA 510K approval. Specifically, she contributed towards establishing quality control methods for an integral subsection of our assay. She was also involved with some early stage development work towards improving part of our assay design.

In addition to the actual benchtop science that she performed and documented, she was also responsible for documenting her work and reagents in a more structured format for our quality management system.  Her experience in the applications group provided her with the understanding of the R&D component and quality/design control necessary towards the overall success of a molecular diagnostics company."