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Many career paths are open for clinical chemists, and attendees at the President’s Invited Session at the 71st AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo in Anaheim, California, will hear from three speakers who eventually pursued careers outside of clinical laboratories: Sky Countryman, CEO of InSource Diagnostics; Nathan Gochman, PhD, a clinical diagnostics technology consultant; and former AACC President Susan Evans, PhD, FAACC, founder and principal of BioDecisions Consulting.

The session’s organizer, AACC President Carmen Wiley, PhD, DABCC, FAACC, also has pursued opportunities at hospitals, reference labs, and both longstanding and startup diagnostic companies. Starting out as a laboratory director at the Marshfield Clinic in Marshfield, Wisconsin, she now serves as the chief clinical officer at Veravas, a startup company in Oakdale, Minnesota, that addresses biotin interference and low abundance biomarkers in diagnostics.

“I’ve held several interesting positions on my path to my current role, and I wanted to share that story in the hopes of inspiring others,” said Wiley. Beyond the Clinical Laboratory Director: Careers for Clinical Chemists (32108) will feature the experiences of other Countryman, Gochman, and Evans, all of whom have found success outside clinical laboratories.

“Each of these speakers has had his or her own varied path in laboratory medicine, and each holds a position that is beyond the traditional laboratory director,” said Wiley, who developed this year’s session and identified the speakers. “I’ve learned a lot from these speakers, and they each have interesting stories and good advice to share with others who many want to pursue a different type of career in lab medicine.”

Participants will hear from each of the panelists and then have the opportunity to engage with them in a moderated Q&A session.

Many opportunities exist in the field of laboratory medicine. “Everyone should be able to find a career and career path that they enjoy and that changes as they change and progress through life,” Wiley observed. Most importantly, laboratorians should make their career what they want it to be, not what others think it should be, she added.

The President’s Invited Session will take place August 5 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the 71st AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo in Anaheim. This don’t-miss presentation is worth 1.5 ACCENT hours.