The Future of Lab Automation and Artificial Intelligence: A Panel Discussion and Networking Event

A robotic arm and symbols of technology with the JHM logo overlayed on the photo

Sponsored by the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Office of Alumni Relations

Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are rapidly transforming the way labs operate. From automating repetitive tasks to developing new insights from data, these technologies are having a major impact on the efficiency, accuracy, and productivity of lab work. Join us for a panel discussion that will explore the latest trends in lab automation and AI, and discuss the opportunities and challenges these technologies present. Panelists will share their insights on how automation and AI are being used in different lab settings and discuss the future. Light fare and beverages will be served.

Disclaimer: The perspectives and opinions expressed by the speaker(s) during this program are those of the speaker(s) and not, necessarily, those of Johns Hopkins University and the scheduling of any speaker at an alumni event or program does not constitute the University’s endorsement of the speaker’s perspectives and opinions.

ABOUT Mr. Adam Harper, AIA
Project Architect, Senior Associate, Gensler

After earning his Bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University in 1999, Adam went on to receive his Masters in Architecture from The Boston Architectural College.  During the course of his design career, Adam has focused primarily on Science & Technology companies with a specialized expertise in lab design and planning. He has completed projects with a number of prominent Science & Technology companies including Vertex Moderna, and Illumina among many others.  He is currently a global Sciences Practice Area Leader for Gensler.

ABOUT Ms. Megan Skarkas
Technical Designer

Megan is a Technical Designer who is dedicated to creating innovative and functional spaces. Upon graduating from Virginia Tech with a Bachelor of Architecture, Megan relocated to Boston. Her design work focuses on typologies including laboratory and higher education. Throughout her career, Megan has worked on projects across the Boston-Metro area as well as in Europe for several prominent clients including the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL), Harvard, Northeastern University, and Moderna.

ABOUT Dr. Claire Zhao
Associate Director, Group Lead; AI/ML, Quantitative and Digital Sciences (AQDS), Pfizer

Dr. Claire Zhao is currently working as the group lead for Clinical AI/ML at Pfizer. Previously, she worked as a research scientist developing AI models and conducting statistical analyses designed to help clinicians and hospitals in patient care and resource management. She pursued a PhD in Biomedical Engineering at the Johns Hopkins University, where she got to explore both the medical school and engineering school curricula. From this unique experience, she increasingly appreciated the interplay between medicine and engineering, began to shape her own research questions and solutions, and then specialized in developing computational and biomechanical models for heart muscle cells for her doctoral thesis. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Systems Design Engineering with a concentration in Statistics from University of Waterloo, where she also enjoyed the various academic, social, and co-op opportunities. Claire also enjoys a variety of sports, dances, and arts outside of work. She is always on the look to meet new people and try new things.

ABOUT Dr. Adam Jenkins
Regional Site Director, BioLabs

Dr. Adam Jenkins is the Regional Director for BioLabs, the premier co-working space for life science startups with 14 sites domestic and internationally.  Focusing on founder success, site operations, and business development, Adam works with entrepreneurs from initial company formation to scaling of their teams throughout their company’s lifecycle.  Prior to BioLabs, Adam worked at Biogen when he was their head of data science and worked in corporate strategy.  He holds a PhD from Boston College and an MBA from Indiana University.

ABOUT Mr. Jonathan Grob
Senior Director and Head of Discover Chemistry and Automation, Valo Health

Jonathan Grob is the Senior Director and Head of Discovery Chemistry & Automation at Valo Health, a biotech company that is using machine learning algorithms and patient data to create the first closed loop platform that will allow invaluable insights at every step of the drug discovery and development process. Over the last 20+ years, he has led and optimized multidisciplinary drug discovery teams in pharma and biotech, with expertise in medicinal chemistry, automation and AI/ML. He is a respected facilitator, coach, and mentor.


 Event Date
Thursday, November 9, 2023
Start Time: 6:00pm EST
End Time: 8:00pm EST

The Engine

750 Main St
Cambridge, MA 02139


JHU School of Medicine Office of Alumni Relations
Jamie Seward
Senior Associate Director of Alumni Relations

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