Merck Alumni Network

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Join our alumni community and experience meaningful networking opportunities,
alumni stories, company news and learning opportunities.
We look forward in staying connected with you!

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Alumni Stories

Salima returned to the workforce 13 years ago, after a five-year career break to raise a family. Having graduated with a BS degree in Genetic Engineering, she landed her first job as a biochemist with us back in 2002. In addition to the immeasurable experience and skills that come with raising three young children, Salima picked up a range of transferrable skills during her break. Today, she is back with us and is currently Director of Global Quality and Chief of staff.
What's been the best thing about your comeback?
Just one year after returning, I was offered an amazing opportunity to move to our brand new, state-of-the-art, research labs in NJ. This opportunity came about due to a company restructure and, as a result, I was able to make a significant contribution to the development of a new oncology treatment. While it meant uprooting my family from PA, everything about it felt right and it’s turned out to be the most gratifying and notable moment of my career, by far.
How has your experience helped upon your return?2
I always felt that the limited support and acceptance for non-traditional careers that I experienced leaves an untapped talent pool for employers. So, helping ensure that returners feel valued, and that we set the right expectations as a company to be successful with this program, feels like progress. Today, returnships are more important than ever, with pressures on families, particularly women, increasing due to the impact of Covid-19. It's important that we are open to those wanting to return to work.
What advice would you give to someone considering a comeback today?
Don't be afraid of rejection or being asked the dreadful question around the time lapse on your resume. Be confident, intentional, and transparent when talking about your experiences and skills gained during your gap years. Most importantly, follow your intuition, as it already knows where you want to be.

Alumni Events

To stay connected, we plan to host several Alumni events in 2023. Events will be hosted both virtually and in person. We will look forward to reconnecting soon.

Returning to our Merck family

I chose to return to Merck because of its robust pipeline and strong reputation within the practicing Medical Community and the Pharmaceutical Industry. I was warmly welcomed back and easily integrated back into my former department and the company.  Knowledge is readily shared between all levels of the organization.  This helps everybody further develop their skills, which in turn leads to the generation of highly reliable information and treatments for patients and their healthcare providers.  I am proud to tell people I work for Merck.
Todd Gruber
Associate VP, Clinical Safety and Risk Management 
One factor that greatly motivated me to return to Merck was the kindness and humility of the people in the work environment. The dynamism, diversity, respect, interaction and collaboration that occurs within my work environment inspires me and motivates me to continue striving and giving the best of myself every day for the well-being of patients. An important aspect of my rejoining the Merck organization is having the opportunity to positively contribute to the molnupiravir program that provide safe and effective alternatives to COVID 19 patients during these pandemic moments. Returning to Merck has provided me experiences that have positively influenced my development as a professional and as a person.
David Rodriguez
Associate Director, Engineering 
MSD Intl GmbH (Puerto Rico Branch)
My decision to return to MERCK mostly hinged upon the company’s culture and attitude towards work/life balance. MERCK understands that a competent employee is one that is able to prioritize personal and professional goals without sacrificing either.
Boris Kevin Bayemi
Senior Specialist, Global Medical Information Scientist 
I’m proud to work for a company that constantly seeks continuous improvement to enhance our processes to be able to deliver quality products to our patients.
Guillermo Ruiz Rivera
Manager, Operations 
MSD Intl GmbH (Puerto Rico Branch)
I admire Merck’s responsibility and commitment to following regulatory guidelines, as well as the spirit of them. We interpret their meaning with an empathetic view, and focus on patients.
Melissa Santo
Associate Director, PSRM  
Portfolio Sourcing & Relationship Management 


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