My introduction to medical device companies through the internship at Boston Scientific this summer has allowed me to understand and learn more about medical devices. This final week here I am focusing on wrapping up and handing off the supply risk matrix. I was also able to attend a meeting as a supplier engineer and learn more about a problem one of our packaging components is having. While this meeting was in Spanish, I was impressed with how much I was able to pick up after 6 short weeks here and see my progress. Providing support in a meeting like this helped me see what a supplier engineer has to think about when there are risks and determining the root cause of the risk is important. The internship experience this summer has given me insights into working in a big medical device company and helped me to see how many different people,
departments, and areas of expertise are needed to keep a company running. Supplier engineering has given me a chance to see more of the work that goes into a medical device outside of the design. I have used the supply risk matrix as a way to understand how risks are assessed, how departments work together to address risks, and how supplier engineers support risks. Also, I have incorporated design changes and improvements in order to make matrix more user-friendly, sustainable, and presentable to other departments. These weeks here in Costa Rica have given me the chance to work and see a medical company in an international context. I hope in going back to Rice and starting school in a couple weeks I integrate my knowledge of medical device companies into how I design and implement my project because I have a better background of the complex parts involved. Additionally, I hope to get more exposure to design and the creation of medical devices.
Our implementation team went to Hospital México this past week to hear more about the project MilkyWaves, which is based here. As we continue to gather information on the MilkyWaves project, I am excited to start working on it this fall when we are back at Rice. An interesting development out of the meeting was that the hospital is building a new surgical suite building and has been wanting to add cameras into the lights in the surgical room in order to record and show procedures to students. A lot of students want to shadow at the hospital, but it can be hard to have many students in the operating room, and they do not see much unless they are right next to the procedure. Harnessing the power of cameras could give the students a better view and provide the experience to more students. We are working on a similar project – a VR system that is addressing clinical needs finding – and the possibility of potentially collaborating in the future with Hospital México to work on video learning would be a great international continuation of our project.
This weekend Christine and I went to the Starbucks Coffee Farm. It is the only coffee farm owned by Starbucks in the world and having a tour of it was amazing. We saw how the coffee was planted, grown, harvested, processed, and roasted. Taking the time to learn the steps made me realize how complex getting to a cup of coffee is. Starbucks focused on showing how they are trying to be sustainable with their production using solar panels to power machines for processing. Also, maintaining their values is important to them while making quality coffee and they never buy from farms that employ children and instead focus on getting kids education while their parents are working. This made me think more about the food and drinks I consume and where they come from. Ending my last weekend here in Costa Rica learning about coffee, which is so important to the people in Costa Rica, was the perfect wrap up.
Costa Rica has been such an amazing trip exploring, learning, and working. I will miss the daily meals with my team, learning more Spanish, and this beautiful country.