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La Trobe Innovation and Entrepreneurship Team

Cerasela Tanasescu


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Cerasela is the Director of La Trobe Innovation and Entrepreneurship Programs with the primary role of overseeing the development and implementation of a strong entrepreneurial program all over Victoria and in all La Trobe Campuses.

Passionate about innovation, Cerasela truly thinks that sustainable start-ups are the key for a better future. She perceives fostering innovation and entrepreneurship as one of the core missions of academia.

Cerasela has 7 years of experience working in universities’ incubators as a senior manager. Before taking this role, she was Program & Activation Manager at RMIT. She also held several senior management positions at ESSEC Business School in Paris, where for 6 years she developed new entrepreneurial communities in Europe and Singapore. Cerasela is also an experienced lecturer and researcher, with multidisciplinary expertise (PhD in Computer Science, Engineering Degree in Bio-Informatics and a Master in Business Administration) allowing her to build connections between different areas of research and their applied, commercialised context.

Cerasela has settled in Australia with her family since November 2014. She loves Melbourne and Victoria and has faith in the creativity of younger generation.

Mark Ryan Mark Ryan

Business Development Manager

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Mark has been delivering business growth and stronger B2B relationships for 25 years. With an entrepreneurial and tenaciously inquisitive nature, client success is his greatest pleasure. He provides clients new ways to plan, execute and review the activities which fulfill their dominant priorities, and delivers mutually beneficial client-business outcomes.

Present: La Trobe University Business Development, Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
2015 – 2017: Australia and New Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance (ANZIIF) Sales Manager
2013 – 2015: Arthur J. Gallagher (Australia) National Manager - Broking Operations
2004 – 2013: ANZIIF Senior Leader Business Development

Monash University Master of Business Administration (MBA), Business Management · (2007 - 2011)
University of Adelaide Graduate Certificate, Innovation and Entrepreneurship · (2009 - 2010)
ANZIIF Diploma of Financial Services, Insurance Broking · (2009 - 2010)
Swinburne University of Technology Master of Business Administration (MBA), Corporate Governance and Business Ethics · (2009 - 2009)
CPIT (Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology) Culinary Arts/Chef Training · (1990 - 1993)

Risk Management Institute of Australasia (RMIA) - Chair, Education Committee
Founder, Shoes for School. Providing industry perspectives and participate in education and financial services industry advisory groups.
Peer Support Provider, Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia
Change Agent, The Movember Foundation

Catherine Klimes Catherine Klimes

Program Manager

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Catherine's role within the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Team is to support a number of internal and externally facing programs.

Launching a Global Markets Accelerator and number of business recovery programs is ensuring Victorian Start-ups and SMEs are well placed not to not only survive, but to thrive, during challenging times.

Nurturing partnerships further develops the universities strengths in Agri-Bio and Food, Health and Wellbeing, Digital Security and Cyber, Tech and Start-Up incubation. Doing so enables La Trobe to not only understand its “why” but ensure it is well positioned to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse and divergent portfolio.

Supporting the talents and capabilities of university educated students, graduates and alumni to transition into meaningful opportunities throughout Australia, Asia and globally is a secondary core focus. To achieve this, our programs focus on identifying emerging undergraduate, postgraduate, international, MBAs, PhDs, Alumni and 1st Nation talent – and aligning their strengths with that of the growing Australian, Asian and Global

Lauren Giusti

Program and Engagement Coordinator

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Lauren is a highly skilled events and programs professional with a background in developing and coordinating engaging experiences for a broad range of audiences and communities. She has expertise in internal and external stakeholder engagement and relationship building. She has a keen eye for creativity and is detailed in her communication work. Her strong administrative background has enabled her success in her previous roles.

Lauren has held previous positions in the education and creative arts industries including Monash University, the Biennale of Sydney and the National Gallery of Victoria. She has completed a Graduate Diploma in Education (Secondary – Visual Arts) and a Bachelor of Fine Arts.

Jenny Bevis Jenny Bevis

Marketing and Communications 

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Jenny has over 10 years’ experience in Event Management, Community Engagement, Marketing and Small Business.
Her experience with La Trobe University includes being a La Trobe University Alumna from Albury Wodonga, La Trobe Accelerator Program Alumna Cohort #2, and winning the La Trobe Big Idea Competition in 2015.

Jenny has worked with several Local Governments in North East Victoria and Southern NSW, Albury Chamber of Commerce and with her small business supported the private sector in North East Vic.

Jenny is passionate about entrepreneurship, small business, and engagement of young people.
She spent 3 years as Chair of a young professional association in Albury Wodonga supporting the ecosystem of regional young professionals.

Jenny holds a Bachelor of Business (Marketing & Management) Advanced Diploma (Events Management) and a Diploma (Marketing).

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