Santa Barbara, Calif., April 24, 2011 – Opening speaker David Mann presented the following remarks at the SCURC at the University of California at Santa Barbara on April 23, 2011. Reflecting from personal experience, he presented the following motivation and advice to the undergraduates honored in the conference:
“In the course of building Vascular BioSciences I’ve had the good fortune to work with people who are not only very smart, but also very nice as well.
During the past 2 years of working with Dr Kalju Kahn in medicinal chemistry and drug design, I’ve come to appreciate that he is one of those very smart and very nice people.
It’s the expertise and consideration of faculty like Kalju Kahn that help make UCSB’s chemistry program one of the best in the world.
Since I launched a branch of VBS in the Santa Barbara area, our company has benefited greatly through our association with UCSB’s chemistry department.
I started my company, Vascular BioSciences in the 1990’s, but my passion to develop science‒based healthcare solutions goes back much farther.
When I was 21 I watched my Mom die of cancer. She was only 54.
- As I looked on helplessly as her doctors failed to save her, a thought occurred to me:
- When people get sick, they go to their doctors for help.
- But when doctors dont have the solution, who do they turn to for help?
In my inability to help my Mom a desire was born to become a person who helps the doctors solve the seemingly unsolvable problems so that someone else in a similar situation could be spared, or at least delay, having to go through what I went through.
It’s the awareness of knowing that you contributed something that can potentially help make a positive difference that provides so much satisfaction to a career in science.
But careers in science, even the most successful ones, are often marked by failure.
When you try to do something you have never done before, let alone something no one has done before, you’re likely to fail, at least on your initial attempts.
But if you persevere, and I can tell that many in this audience are the persevering type, many times you can eventually succeed.
And your reward for persevering? You get to proceed to the next step in your path that you’ve never done before. At which you will fail again, and again, until you succeed.
From the outside, some may judge you a success, but to yourself, you’re often failing.
And that, I would submit, is the key to a successful career in science and a successful life: challenging yourself with new tasks and new goals that are initially met with failure. Because only by exposing ourselves to the possibility, even the certainty, of failure can we be ultimately successful.
All the presenters here, of both the oral talks as well as the poster presenters, are successes because they had the courage to face failure, and the perseverance to overcome it.
Vascular BioSciences is proud to be a sponsor of this conference along with the American Chemical Society.
Welcome to the conference and enjoy the science.”
About Vascular BioSciences
Vascular BioSciences, a diversified biomedical company with operations in California and North Carolina, provides disease solutions in order to enhance and prolong human life.
Vascular BioSciences makes interventional catheters to obtain endoarterial biopsies, provides molecular diagnostic services, and advances therapies in order to improve disease outcomes for patients with significant unmet medical needs.