The Innovative Minds Partnering to Advance Curative Therapies (IMPACT) Program at Mayo Clinic will hold their fourth annual IMPACT Symposium this Saturday, March 18 from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. The IMPACT Symposium is a daylong conference for students to pitch their innovative hypotheses to critical Mayo research questions. The event includes poster presentations, oral presentations by top student teams, and keynote presentations highlighting advances in Regenerative Medicine, Individualized Medicine, and Surgical Education. This year, students from 30 Minnesota state, private, and community colleges will participate in the IMPACT program.
The IMPACT program is a crowdsourcing competition that engages Minnesota undergraduate students. Undergraduate student teams were challenged this year to develop innovative hypotheses to the following challenge questions:
- What is the underlying cause of hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS)?
- How do obesity and type 2 diabetes increase the risk of pancreatic cancer?
- What pedagogical approach should be used in surgical residency programs to improve patient outcomes after inguinal hernia repair?
To date, a total of 522 students have participated in the IMPACT program over the past 4 years. This year, 72 teams, including 238 students, worked on the IMPACT challenge questions from November to February and will pitch their novel ideas at the IMPACT Symposium. The teams who win the IMPACT competition will receive $1000 per student and a paid summer internship to do research related to their IMPACT topic here at Mayo Clinic.
The Todd and Karen Wanek Family Program for Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS) is a collaborative network of specialists bonded by the vision of delaying or preventing heart failure for individuals affected by congenital heart defects including HLHS. The specialized team is addressing the various aspects of these defects by using research and clinical strategies ranging from basic science to diagnostic imaging to regenerative therapies.