Innovation continues at Seneca’s summer program
September 11, 2019
MARKHAM, Ont. – Five groups of aspiring entrepreneurs from the third annual Seneca HELIX Summer Institute took the stage and presented their ideas inside the corporate headquarters of SE Health as part of a pitch day event on Friday, August 23, 2019.
With seasoned healthcare industry veterans – including Adam Erwood, manager of transformation at Markham Stouffville Hospital (MSH) and Mary Lou Ackerman, vice president of innovation at SE Health – in attendance, the 27 participants of this year’s 10-day design jam program showcased their respective visions for the future of community healthcare.
The focus for this year’s program was on improving access to community resources for clients of the Hope Initiative, a model of holistic community care created in partnership by MSH and SE Health that leverages emerging technologies such as cloud computing.
The innovative pitches – based on research that included interviews with healthcare professionals at both MSH and SE Health – reflected the unique perspectives that were made possible by the diversity of the participants, who hailed from a wide range of professional, academic and cultural backgrounds.
The winning pitch – via the announcement of a People’s Choice award following the presentations and a Q-and-A session – went to the group, Beyond 4 (pictured).
The group won the audience over through their mobile app prototype, which allowed information to flow seamlessly between a patient’s smartphone and a healthcare provider’s database, while giving the healthcare provider the ability to strategically allocate resources by digitally triaging incoming requests.
Throughout the HELIX Summer Institute, which took place from August 12 to 23, the participants were provided with building tools for development, which included interactive workshops on design thinking, prototyping and data analytics, keynote speeches and mentorship support that covered various aspects of entrepreneurship.
“Whether participants want to be an entrepreneur or an intrepreneur, the entrepreneurial mindset developed at the HELIX Summer Institute is critical to every business or enterprise,” said Chris Dudley, director of entrepreneurship at Seneca.
Notably, this year’s Seneca HELIX Summer Institute welcomed its first-ever high school participant and marked the first time that SE Health became a partner.