Ximbassador Program at PSU

Biology lab

The Ximbassador Program at PSU

Portland State's Innovation & Intellectual Property office has partnered with Ximbio, part of the technology transfer team within Cancer Research UK, to offer Ph.D. students and postdocs a unique opportunity to experience the technology transfer industry and develop transferable skills for their future careers.

The Ximbassador Program is a 6-month, paid, part-time internship that runs alongside your existing day-to-day role. It is tailored to life sciences postgraduate students, particularly those working in a postdoc or Ph.D. position. The role of the Ximbassador is to engage with laboratories on campus, help uncover new reagents and materials of interest to other scientists.

Meet our current Ximbassador

George Kasun (pictured) is a Ph.D. student in Dr. Ken Stedman's lab where he studies the evolution of a newly discovered group of single-stranded DNA viruses through biochemistry experiments as well as detailed computer-aided analysis. Kasun's work explores viruses capable of novel evolutionary patterns. His interest in the Ximbassador program is in exploring the variety of research and research tools developed by fellow PSU researchers and exposure to "non-traditional" career paths for scientists.

To learn more about the Ximbassador program at PSU or to discuss a material you would like to make available to researchers, get in touch with George by sending an email to ximbassador@pdx.edu.

George Kasun

Interested in becoming a Ximbassador?

As a Ximbassador you will learn the importance of tech transfer in the life sciences industry and the benefits it provides. In addition, you will have the opportunity to meet and network with senior researchers and principal investigators from all research areas within life sciences at PSU. You will leave the internship having gained skills in commercialization, tech transfer, marketing, negotiation, communication, networking and project management.

The technology transfer industry bridges the gap between academia and industry and provides a unique perspective on both sectors. Many Ph.D. students and postdocs are aware of the career paths within academia and industry. Few, however, are aware of the technology transfer industry or the career opportunities within this it for life sciences students. The Ximbassador Program aims to introduce postgraduate students in the life sciences to this world.

If you are interested in becoming a PSU Ximbassador, please contact the current Ximbassador, George Kasun

Time Commitments

The internship runs for a minimum of six months and requires an average of five hours a week. The role is flexible and can be fitted around existing class schedules and your lab commitments.

Activities

As a Ximbassador, your activities would include:

  • Working in close collaboration with your institute’s tech transfer office and the Ximbio portfolio managers at Cancer Research UK
  • Engaging and networking with research scientists within PSU's life sciences departments to understand their research interests, and to further the understanding of the Ximbio model and Ximbio’s mission to accelerate research
  • Uncovering new reagents and research tools (antibodies, cell lines, mouse models, proteins, compounds, etc.) at PSU by engaging with laboratories on campus
  • Contributing to the identification and description of novel research reagents created at PSU
  • Working with PSU research faculty to submit reagents as Invention Disclosures, and helping to add selected reagents to the Ximbio portfolio of PSU technologies so that they become available to the scientific community

Outcomes

Completing this six-month internship will provide you with:

  • Experience of working in tech transfer and commercialization
  • An understanding of the business aspects of the life sciences industry 
  • Experience in alternative scientific careers (including technology transfer, science communication, commercialization, industry and non-profit)
  • Transferable skills that are vital for your future career success (including negotiation, relationship management, due diligence, networking, intellectual property, licensing, product management, e-commerce, marketing, and project management skills)
  • The ability to put your research into context within the wider regulatory and professional environment
  • An understanding of the importance of reagent commercialization and intellectual property
  • Unique work experience to add to your CV
  • A broad network of researcher connections across your institute

About Ximbio

Cancer Research UK is the largest independent funder of cancer research globally. Ximbio is the reagent sourcing and licensing arm of Cancer Research UK. Technologies commercialized through the Ximbassador program return a portion of their revenue to both to PSU, and, according to the PSU IP policy, to the department and inventors. A portion of the revenue retained by Ximbio also funds CRUK’s research funds to help further cancer research.