Medical engineering cooperation

Hello everyone.

I´m Abel David a biomedical engineering graduate and I was offered this IVY experience when I was doing my business internship in the Institute for Biomedical and Health Research of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (ULPGC) two months ago. I was able to extend my stay helping with the proyect and I'm very happy with the experience.

In this two months I've mainly helped them with science fairs and outreach activities in social networks, while ocassionally helping in more technical areas.

I'm working with the MedTec4SusDev (Medical Technology for Sustainable Development) team under the MACbioIDi (Macaronesian Biomedical Investigation Development and innovation), we focus on developing sustainable medical technology in a framework of international cooperation in the macaronesian area. Specifically, we specialize in medical training devices, or phantoms as it's formally named.

First, in september we got the "Macaronight", the night of researchers here in Gran Canaria, where we exhibited the group's ongoing work. Then in october we organized a free course in the Health Faculty of the ULPGC named N.I.RV.ANA (Novedades en Impresion y Realidad Virtual en Anatomia) where our group taught novelties about 3D printing and virtual reality applied to anatomy and medical research that we were working on. And then we had a week of presentations directed to high school students in the Elder museum of science and technology where we showed the role of an engineer in medicine and medical related research.

Finally, november was the busiest month, we participated in the weeks of science and innovation in Canarias, a science fair oriented to high school students in the morning and general public in the afternoon. From the 6th to the 8th of november we were in Santa Cruz de Tenerife and from the 13th to the 15th in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.

In this kinds of fairs we make a quick presentation of 30 minutes approximately about the role of engineering in medicine, while talking about the systems we already have like the laparoscopy simulator and an epidural puncture training simulator. And we also teach a bit of medical imaging techniques in the hopes that we catch the interest of another future health engineer.

In conclusion, this has been a very enriching experience, not only I've been able to work in a field that I really like, I've also been able to practice my public speaking skills, wich I must confess were a bit lacking at the start. And last, but not least, I've enjoyed this opportunity very much, I've met a lot of like-minded people and if it weren't for the exhaustion from the fairs this really didn't feel like working at all.

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