In October, 23 students from BVSD and SVVSD spent time at Medtronic’s new campus in Lafayette for our STEM E3 Jam Session with the biomedical technology company. As part of the afternoon, the students were able to tour parts of the Medtronic campus and participate in learning activities around different types of biomedical technology. Students were able to use a laparoscopic trainer box, including the different advanced bipolar devices (LigaSure Vessel Sealers) used in laparoscopic surgery and made at the Medtronic Lafayette campus. Students tried their hands at different tasks, including coordinating the movements necessary to move colored pegs around a peg board, while looking at a camera to navigate the hidden space. Students also demoed cranial and spine surgery with and without a robot. They learned how Medtronic “maps” the current location of the surgeon’s tools to images (MRIs and CTs) to enable them to see how their actions impact the patient during surgery. A robotic demo showed the students how their surgical robot controls its four arms during an operation, and how using a robot in spine surgery helps a surgeon be as accurate as possible. Another activity allowed students to learn the basics of what pulse oximetry is, how they measure it and what it means, and the different types of sensors Medtronic makes.
“My daughter has left each [STEM E3Jam Session] feeling so inspired with a new set of dreams, goals and opportunities unlocked! I cannot underscore enough the impact this experience has had on her. She has mentioned after both Google and Medtronic how impactful it was to her to see women of color in those spaces. She expressed that seeing them in these creative, powerful, life changing roles has helped her feel more confident and more resolved in her belief that achieving her own dreams is possible. Thank you, thank you!” – Parent of a STEM E3 student participant
Women of Medtronic
To round out the day, women who work at Medtronic took part in a speaker panel so the students could hear how they navigated their careers and what it’s like for them to work in a STEM field. Students were able to ask questions and see how a STEM career could be an exciting possibility for themselves in the future.
We are so grateful to Medtronic for partnering with us for our fall STEM E3 Jam Session and look forward to more opportunities to work together in the future! Learn more about the STEM E3 program at ywcaboulder.org.