Commercialization Specialist Program

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Commercialization Specialist Program

Center for Research Innovation (CRI) is excited to announce the launch of the Professional Discovery Network – a network of programs designed to empower Northeastern graduate students to operate within the landscape of research commercialization and entrepreneurship.  

By participating in the Professional Discovery Network, Northeastern’s PhDs, MBAs, MAs and MSs, expand their professional networks, advance leadership skills, and boost their resumes through experience-driven education. 

The first node of the Network is the Commercialization Specialist Program. Students participating in this program function as a bridge between Northeastern researchers and industry R&D teams. As Commercialization Specialists, they execute a suite of fundamental responsibilities within the field of technology transfer and play a critical role in bringing Northeastern technologies to life in the world’s living rooms, office spaces, and natural habitats.     

The CRI partnered with the College of Science to kick off the Commercialization Specialist program. College of Science collaborator, Jared Auclair, Associate Dean of Professional Programs and Graduate Affairs, finds great benefit in the program as it “provides PhD candidates an opportunity to learn about intellectual property and how they can apply their technical training to a non-traditional career path.” 

The Commercialization Specialist program also contributes to CRI’s mission to see Northeastern’s life-bettering technologies transform communities on the local and global scale. By applying their research specialization and communication skills, Specialists connect Northeastern innovators and industry executives, setting discoveries on the path to impact.  

Commenting on the program, Jennifer Boyle-Lynch, Director of the CRI, remarks: “Any time you can bring education, economics, and empowerment into alignment is a good day. Seeing this program take shape, witnessing the eagerness of the Specialists, foreseeing the results they will generate – how can I not be excited?” 

Expansion is on the horizon for the Professional Discovery Network and the Commercialization Specialist program. In the coming months, the Professional Discovery Network will add a second program providing experiential education in venture development and the Commercialization Specialist program will extend to Bouvé College of Health Sciences, College of Engineering, and Khoury College of Computer Sciences.  

Inaugural Commercialization Specialists 

MicrosoftTeams Image (4)

Fausto Capelluto

Fausto is a PhD student in biology. He is keen on learning the complex internal dynamics mitochondria display when communicating with the rest of the cell. Fausto seeks a new process that will help researchers study the impact of transplanted mitochondria, which hold the key to a host of new treatments for cancer, heart disease, aging, infertility, and more.

MicrosoftTeams Image (5)

Nicole Cavanaugh

Nicole earned her BS at Rochester Institute of Technology in Biotechnology and Molecular Biosciences with a minor in archaeological sciences. She has experience with antibiotic discovery and as a Northeastern PhD student, she is a member of the Chai Lab where she investigates the innerworkings of biofilms.

Ryan Murray

Ryan Murray

Ryan is enrolled in Northeastern’s Industry PhD program with an emphasis on cell and molecular biology. In his role at Beam Therapeutics, Ryan researches gene editing technologies for immuno-oncology therapies targeting pediatric leukemia and lymphoma. 


Feature Image – Photo by Brooks Canaday/Northeastern University.

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