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Communications is Key

By April Hall


pat walshCommunication is vital to PAT WALSH MT’83, BW’01, either in her current role or when she puts on her alumni hat and meets with students. As director of global labeling at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Pat is responsible for the inserts that come with medications, referred to as labeling documents, patient instructions, and physician leaflets. She is on the frontline of communication to the consumer about the safe and effective use of medications and the best way to take them.

Pat needs to make sure everyone in her organization is on the same page. She not only meets regularly with those she supervises directly but keeps lines open to other departments.

“Within my position, I have people who report to me, so I’m constantly doing training of internal processes as well as external health authority regulations,” Pat said. “We’re always looking for how to do things better while still meeting the guidelines. We also do a lot of cross-functional training with legal, clinical, safety, and our ex-U.S. colleagues to keep them up to date on how the labeling gets done.”

While her two children were young, Pat, who lives in East Norriton, Pennsylvania, could be found volunteering at their schools, helping with the theater costumes, or serving with the home and school association.

quoteNow that her children are in college, Pat has turned her attention back to her alma mater. Admittedly, that work still keeps her close to her son R.J., who is a fifth-year physical therapy major at USciences. Her daughter Jill, is a third-year communications major at Chestnut Hill College.

“Personally, my opinion is you have to volunteer to give back in your life,” Pat said. “When my children were young, volunteering not only helped the students; I felt connected to my kids.”

Pat is currently on the USciences Alumni Association board of directors, serving as chair of the bylaws committee. When she heads to campus, about their possible futures.

“I enjoy coming down to USciences and speaking, specifically with pharmacy students, about the possibility of working in a pharmaceutical company and what goes into drug development,” she said. “Some of the students have told me their curriculum is so rigorous, they don’t always have the opportunity to look at the business applications.”

She also said she is happy to mentor students and young professionals as she was mentored during her 30-year career. She believes being a member of professional organizations has helped her, and it is a move she would recommend to young people.

“There’s nothing like experience. For someone starting out new, if they can align themselves with someone who has years of experience,” Pat said, “that’s a great thing.”

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