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Workshops & seminars

Alumni Mentoring Homecoming Breakfast

Roundtable discussions at Homecoming

Date & time

Saturday, September 21, 2019
9 a.m. – 11 a.m.




University Advancement


Vargas Restaurant
690 René-Levesque Blvd. W., Montreal

Start your morning off right at a networking breakfast during Homecoming 2019.

Talk shop with Top Alumni

Saturday, September 21, 2019

  • 9 – 9:30 a.m. Registration
  • 9:30 – 10 a.m. Networking breakfast
  • 10 – 11 a.m. Roundtable discussions
  • Vargas Restaurant, 690 René-Levesque Blvd. W., Montreal

After breakfast, sit down with your peers and with seasoned alumni mentors in a small group to talk informally and gain career insights into a particular industry or area of expertise.

Discussions will be led by:

Andrea Paine, BA 85
Director of Government Relations, Aurora Cannabis Inc.

Emil Vanjaka, BComm 10
Operations and Business Development Manager, ExCellThera

Richard Z’Graggen, BFA 95
VP, Head of Experience Design at LVL

Mario Ciaramicoli, BEng 02
Project Management Analyst, Canadian Space Agency

Anthony Nelson, BA 04
President, Meade Wilis

Mélanie Briand, BA 05, MSc 09
Lecturer, Department of Management, John Molson School of Business

You are bound to leave with a larger network and potentially with a professional mentor.

$10, includes buffet breakfast

Information: or 514-848-2424, ext. 3819

Andrea Paine, BA 85

Andrea Paine, BA 85

National Director of Government Relations, Aurora Cannabis Inc.

Aurora Cannabis is a producer of medical cannabis and cannabis oils under license from Health Canada and one of the world’s largest and fastest growing cannabis companies with sales and operations in 25 countries across five continents. During her time at Health Canada, Andrea was responsible for the drafting and successful passage, through the House of Commons and the Senate, of the Canadian Consumer Protection Act, and was part of the team that brought forward the first medical cannabis regulations in Canada.

Andrea also has a long professional career in politics and government. She worked for over twenty-five years with cabinet Ministers in Quebec provincial departments of Food and Fisheries, Transport and Education, and Federal Ministers of Human Resources and Social Development, Heritage, Health, as well as with the Government House Leader.

Emil Vanjaka, BComm 10

Emil Vanjaka, BComm 10

Operations and Business Development Manager, ExCellThera

ExCellThera is an advanced clinical stage biotechnology company delivering molecules and bioengineering solutions to expand blood stem and immune cells for therapeutic use. Emil’s work involves everything from fostering potential partnerships, attending to legal matters, dealing with intellectual property questions, putting in place manufacturing strategies, structuring financing rounds, mounting financial projections, as well as general business and growth strategy for the company.

Emil has an expertise in law, business and technology, having previously practiced intellectual property, corporate and commercial law with multiple top tier law firms, with a focus on emerging technology clients. He also lead various innovation and technology initiatives within one of Canada’s largest law firms. Emil has experience in various industries and businesses, including aerospace, financial, pharmaceutical and biotech companies. He is a lawyer and holds a bachelor of commerce, three law degrees and an MBA.

Richard Z’Graggen, BFA 95

Richard Z’Graggen, BFA 95

VP, Head of Experience Design at LVL Studio

Richard leads a user-experience design team at LVL in media and entertainment technology.

He has worked as a designer and art director with leading clients in telecom, TV networks, and pharmaceuticals, and began his design journey in the early days of 3D animation software and the web dotcom bubble. Richard studied Design Art at Concordia and Systems Design Engineering at the University of Waterloo.

Mario Ciaramicoli, BEng 02

Mario Ciaramicoli, BEng 02

Project Management Analyst at Canadian Space Agency

As a Project Management Analyst at the Canadian Space Agency, Mario accompanies project managers working on a large variety of projects to ensure their success within appropriate governance requirements.

Previously, he served as an Operations Engineer, Crew Instructor, and Systems Engineer in support of robotics on the International Space Station. Mario holds a Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering degree from Concordia as well as a Master’s of Space Studies from the International Space University in Strasbourg. He is a certified Project Management Professional with the Project Management Institute, and a registered engineer with the Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec.

Anthony Nelson, BA 04

Anthony Nelson, BA 04

President, Meade Willis

Anthony Nelson has served as president of Meade Willis since March 2017. In this capacity, he oversees all operational activities and the implementation of company-wide initiatives that require a global vision. He is also responsible for strategic planning and policy, including product innovation and commercialization, as well as corporate governance.

Beyond this, Anthony has 16 years of senior management experience in shop floor and cloud based supply chain solutions. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Concordia University.

Melanie Briand, MSc 09

Melanie Briand, MSc 09

Professor, Concordia's Dept. of Management 
Certified Professional and Personal Coach

As a certified coach, trainer and consultant, Melanie assists individuals and teams in developing action plans that enable them to achieve their goals through skills development and high-quality motivation. Because her clientele is diversified, Melanie knows how to adapt to the needs of people.

Melanie lectures at the John Molson School of Business on topics dealing with organizational behaviour, training and development, and leadership and motivation. Melanie holds a Master of Science in Administration (M.Sc.), a Certificate in Strategic Human Resources and a Certificate in Personal and Professional Coaching (PPCC).

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