Inspiring Young Alumni: Catching up with Dr. David Cappadocia ’04
Dr. David Cappadocia’s ’04 passion for science began in Grade 9 at St. Michael’s College School (SMCS) where he was a founding member of the robotics team. This passion helped pave an inspiring career at the intersection of science and business.
After graduating from SMCS, Dr. Cappadocia completed his B.Sc., M.Sc., and PhD in neuroscience at York University. In his PhD, he investigated how the human brain uses visual information to plan eye movements and arm movements towards objects, which is important to better understand rehabilitation strategies for patients with specific brain lesions. This work was presented at international neuroscience conferences and published in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
He then joined the consulting team at IQVIA Canada (a Fortune-500 global provider of advanced analytics, technology solutions, and clinical research services to the life sciences industry), partnering with leading life science companies to develop innovative solutions to commercial business problems.
Dr. Cappadocia now finds himself at Bayer Canada as Strategy Lead – Analytics Translation. In this role, he combines commercial strategy and data science to inform their customer engagement strategy.
Find out more about Dr. Cappadocia and why he is one of our inspiring young alumni.
How did SMCS prepare you for and propel you into life?
As someone that focused more on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) courses — which were great and really prepared me for university — I think my strong Liberal Arts foundation helped round me out and gave me a more versatile skill set. A lot of my career has leveraged understanding science/data and being able to communicate effectively to non-technical business leaders, which is a real growth area in my field.
Do you continue to be involved with SMCS?
I really enjoyed my time at SMCS, I made some great friends and continue to keep in touch with a few former classmates.
Since graduation, I’ve had several coffees with students and attended alumni events. I have also attended a concussion symposium hosted by the school, which was a very engaging, forward-thinking event.
How do you live out the Basilian motto of Teach me Goodness, Discipline, and Knowledge?
I think the motto is a great foundation for a successful life. Goodness places a focus on being fair and ethical and ensuring what you do has a net positive impact on the world. Discipline is key to taking on challenging endeavors with focus and determination (finishing a PhD, working on a large commercial strategy project, carving out a balance between a demanding career and time for friends and family). Knowledge is critically important to drive informed decision-making and citizenship, striving to be evidence-based in a time where misinformation/disinformation is sadly prevalent.
How has your Catholic faith supported you?
I think the golden rule is a great guiding principle and has helped me reflect on how to act justly and with empathy in my personal and professional life. Having a strong moral grounding with an emphasis on treating others with dignity and respect, appreciating the privilege I have, and helping me think of how to help those in need has been invaluable.
How do you stay connected to SMCS within your community and industry?
I’ve had several students reach out over the years to have a virtual coffee and chat about my career journey and how I might be able to help provide some insights. SMCS has a fantastic network that I’ve leveraged as well, so happy to pay it forward. I’ve also attended several young alumni events over the years and really enjoyed re-connecting with alumni and teachers.
How do you demonstrate through work that you are being the best for the world?
Through my work, I help provide innovative, safe, and effective medicines to patients that need them and assist them to live a better life. I think the past couple of years has really highlighted the value that innovative therapies and vaccines bring to the world. Being a part of that industry is really rewarding.
What advice would you like to share with the current SMCS students?
I encourage you to find out what you are passionate about and good at. Talk to people working at the intersection of those interests to learn what opportunities currently exist and what are on the horizon.
As Dr. Cappadocia looks forward to spending more time with friends and family as restrictions gradually lift, he continues to work with a fantastic team to ensure patients have access to life-changing innovative medicines.
We are pleased to feature Dr. David Cappadocia as a member of our inspiring young alumni. More young alumni can be found on the wall outside the main office. These young leaders are change-makers representing a variety of fields, industries, and professions, who are leading their lives through faith, character, and service.