Meet Our Ovation Star – Mark Adamowicz
Meet Mark Adamowicz, Senior Embryologist, Ovation Las Vegas
Mark Adamowicz is in his 30th year in the IVF field and says he has found his dream team and dream job at Ovation Las Vegas. A member of Ovation’s Leadership Council, Mark also serves as a mentor for younger embryologists in the IVF lab.
How did you get into your line of work?
By chance, actually. I was working at a high-volume medical testing facility in Michigan. My wife and I just had our third child, and I was looking for a second job. Because I’m old-fashioned, I wanted my wife to stay home with the kids. I saw a lab job offered at a facility I had not heard of, and when I interviewed, I recognized the doctors were fertility doctors who had sent their samples for testing to the facility I currently worked at.
They hired me initially for part-time, then within two weeks, I was upgraded to full-time. At the end of the first month, the doctors said they liked my work ethic and asked if I would be interested in learning IVF. I worked two full-time jobs for four years, and I was getting close to burnout and had to choose one. I chose the IVF job because I loved what I was doing.
I stayed in Michigan for about seven years with that practice, spent a brief time in Tennessee before initially moving to Las Vegas to join a different practice where I worked for eight years. Following my time in Vegas, I went to work for a doctor in California for 10 years. I always felt a pull to come back to Las Vegas. An opportunity arose with Ovation, and I jumped on it. I had heard good things about Ovation when I was in California, and a friend had put me in contact with Martha Aguirre, our lab director. I drove up for the interview and loved the people, loved Martha’s approach to everything. Upon receiving the job offer, we decided to come back to Las Vegas, and we’d like to stay here forever. We’ve already been back for four years.
What Is an average day like for you?
I am usually the second or third person into the lab. If we have retrievals, I’ll be checking embryos for biopsy and freezing, doing fertilization checks or thaw prep. If my lab partner is doing retrievals, I do cleaning of the eggs. Most mornings, we have multiple cases at various stages of development that need to be looked at. We also proceed with biopsies and cryopreservation of embryos to close out our morning responsibilities. Once the morning lab work is completed, with retrievals and thaws, it’s kind of administration time with entry of results and data into the EMR, sending out emails to patients, or restocking the lab.
At lunch, I usually walk with my wife. She works as a medical billing specialist with the Fertility Center of Las Vegas. Following lunch, I come back to perform ICSI, embryo transfers and prepare for the next day’s schedule. It’s kind of a seamless flow.
There are things I like to do and things my co-workers like to do, so we share. I love the micromanipulation aspect of my job–doing ICSI, biopsies, and tubing cells ready in preparation for genetic testing. I feel like I’m playing video games with a controller (Donkey Kong or Pac-Man), like in the arcade where I grew up except, I don’t have to deposit a quarter (yes, I’m totally dating myself).
We just moved to our new laboratory in Las Vegas, and it’s incredible! The whole facility is beautiful. We have quite a lot of space. This lab will be a nice crown jewel for Ovation.
What’s your favorite part of working for Ovation?
I have liked everything about this company, from the top down. The management’s open-door policy has been phenomenal. Being able to reach out and speak with the CEO and president of the company at any time has been great. I’ve been able to share my experiences and concerns with them. They take it to heart, and that means a lot. Ovation is a great place to work.
I’m also honored to be part of Ovation’s Leadership Council, which bridges the gap between the corporate and lab teams. I share what I hear there with our lab team, so they know what’s new and current, and if they have questions, I am able to bring up their concerns.
We have a wonderful lab director in Martha. She is so knowledgeable, and if we need a hand, she comes into the lab and assists. Martha’s here to bounce ideas off of all the time, and we share experiences and keep each other up to date on what we hear and read in the industry. She’s leading by example. If she ever needs a favor, the answer is “yes” because of the atmosphere she has promoted here. Also, I work with an awesome team of people–co-workers Martha, Shyni, Chelsea, Josh, and Amanda! They make it a joy to come to work every day. We have a great working relationship and back each other up.
As an added bonus, we have a wonderful relationship with the physicians at The Fertility Center of Las Vegas. They are always asking us for our ideas and opinions on things from a lab standpoint, and we share ideas about potential studies.
It really is a great place to work. I don’t even consider it work. How can something be considered “work” when you wake up each day and know you’re working with an incredible team who all want the same thing – success for our patients? I have found where I want to stay.
What do you like about working in fertility care?
This October, I will hit 30 years in the industry (OMG, has it been that long already?), and I turn 60 (shhh, don’t tell anyone) in December. So, this is a fun year for me to recognize that I have put three decades in and have seen a lifetime of changes that have happened during that time.
In that time, human IVF volume has just exploded, and I feel very fortunate to be part of it. I know every day that I come to work, I will laugh and smile. I work with great people. Martha has a great atmosphere here; it’s very open, which I absolutely love. It’s fun because I see a younger crew coming here in their early 30s, and I love to see the excitement in them. I’ve seen some younger people coming into this field just chasing a paycheck, and I have seen those who really want to learn, expand their knowledge and are truly invested in getting results for patients – and that is what we have here! It is very rewarding for me to share what I have experienced with our team.
When I was in California, I worked by myself for 10 years doing everything in the lab. I enjoyed it, but you can only do it for so long. To be part of this team has been great. I just love it. They know they can rely on me to be able to step in wherever help is needed. We all want the same thing, success for our patients.
What do you like to do for fun?
I’m a big family get-together guy. My kids are all grown (31, 31, 30, and 28), and I have 4 grandchildren (11, 9, 6, and 5), with most of them living relatively close by. If I could keep all our kids and grandkids near us always, I’d love it. I want them all here, with a big table for dinner, lots of laughter and making memories.
My wife and I enjoy going to Cabo San Lucas, which is our go-to vacation destination. We try to go once a year. I’m a big hockey fan and enjoy going to games when I can. Around Las Vegas, we like to hike at Red Rock Park, go out locally for dinners and get together with friends for fun nights out.