Knowledgeable, articulate and already on a solid career path, it’s easy to understand why Matt McLean, senior engineering manager at Medtronic, was selected to be part of the first group of Ferolyn Fund fellows.
Matt received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University, which is where he started considering how he could best apply his background to an industry that would benefit people in a direct and tangible way. Medical devices seemed like a natural fit.
What started as the glimmer of an interest expanded to becoming a path to a life-long career. “Playing a role in developing therapies that improve someone’s quality of life and seeing a patient improve as a result of technology that you helped design is one of the most rewarding aspects of my job, and has really solidified my passion for this industry,” he said.
Matt launched his medtech career at NeoTract, a company that develops minimally invasive solutions to address unmet needs in the field of urology, where he worked for nearly six years. This was an impressive first experience in medtech for Matt as he had the opportunity to work on the design and refinement of the company’s signature product, the UroLift® System treatment for men suffering from enlarged prostate, which is on the market today.
He later moved on to The Foundry as R&D manager and became director of R&D at Twelve, which was acquired by Medtronic last year. At Twelve he had the opportunity to follow a device from concept through the entire lifecycle up to the first-in-human experience. This well-rounded experience involved all aspects of device development, including R&D, clinical studies and physician training.
The Ferolyn fellowship has been a natural segue for his career progression. What has impressed him the most so far is the number of leaders and entrepreneurs in the medtech industry who have volunteered their time to share their expertise as mentors.
He has had the opportunity to tap into a large network, receiving input and advice on diverse areas that include R&D, VC best practices, finance and branding. The mentorship he has received so far will help accelerate his career as he has been offered perspective and insight that would otherwise likely take years to obtain.
“It’s been a great honor to be part of this first-year fellowship, and I hope I am able to contribute to helping shape the future of the program, and therefore give back as much as I am receiving from it,” he noted.
Matt has also greatly benefited from the relationships he has formed with the other fellows, as they experience the camaraderie that comes from discussing professional challenges and share what each is learning from the program.
In his spare time, he loves kiteboarding and playing music, but most of all spending time with the new addition to his family, his five-month old son.
The Fellowship was created as a tribute to the late Ferolyn Powell, an invaluable contributor to the medical device industry, with the goal to improve patient care by supporting promising entrepreneurs with strong leadership skills, passion and aptitude to transform healthcare.