Training and Education

Having a well-trained and prepared workforce is a key part of building Indiana's workforce capacity in the health sciences.  Starting at the earliest levels, emphasizing STEM education, finding ways to employ our college graduates and veterans here in Indiana, and continuing to integrate new skills and abilities into the existing workforce are the basic steps we all need to take to insure that Indiana's health science community is ready for the 21st Century and beyond.

IHIF offers several programs to engage our members with educational opportunities in their communities, train their employees, and assist veterans entering the workforce.  To learn more, please follow the links below. 

Training - Partnership with Life Collaborative


Life Collaborative


Introducing our New Learning Partner!
IHIF is proud to welcome our new learning partner, Life Collaborative - Building Healthy Careers in Life Sciences.

Life Collaborative offers a suite of eLearning resources to help prepare you for a career, or advance the one you’ve already got, in the Life Science industry. The Life Collaborative curriculum was created and validated by real-world industry practitioners and, to that end, is backed by a Certificate of Achievement which is awarded to individuals who demonstrate comprehension in any of its broad spectrum of topics - BioTech, MedTech, Pharmaceuticals, Project Management, Quality, Regulatory, Sales & Marketing, Finance, Team Leadership, and more.

CLICK HERE to learn more about what IHIF's affiliation may mean for you.

IHIF Members are eligible to receive $500 off!

Life Collaborative also invites you to learn more about the MedTech and BioTech Veterans Program.  MVPvets is a national initiative, powered by innovative Life Science organizations, to provide training and networking opportunities for transitioning veterans.  CLICK HERE to learn more about this extraordinary initiative and how you, or your company, may get involved.

Education - Partnership with Project Lead the Way (PLTW)



Pilot Project: The Indiana High School Biotechnology Consortium

The Biotechnology Consortium is a collaboration between select Project Lead The Way (PLTW) high schools offering a four-year biomedical curriculum and the Indiana Health Industry Forum (IHIF) to pursue research in the secondary academic environment. Through this collaboration, high school students will interact with IHIF member companies to complete a research project in biotechnology.  We will accomplish this through the development of an open network of health science professionals willing to mentor research projects that are developed by PLTW students.  Workshops will be used to deliver information to teachers on standards, practices, and resources for the projects. Completed student research projects will be displayed and assessed by life science professionals at the IHIF 2014 Annual Meeting.

For the purposes of this pilot project, biotechnology is defined as: the use of genetic and/or biochemical processes of living systems for the betterment of humankind.


2014 Project

Phase I - Project Kick-Off

IHIF is seeking mentors, project ideas, and other assistance to help advance the consortium. A project kick-off meeting will be held on February 22, 2014 This will be a brainstorming session for teachers, students, mentors and volunteers to identify projects for student competition.  Project ideas are sought in four categories:

  • Nanotechnology
  • Genetic Engineering
  • Digital Technology
  • Medical Devices

Phase II -  Poster Presentation and Project Judging

A poster presentation of team projects will be held in conjunction with the IHIF 2014 Annual Meeting on May 5 - 6th.  Students will present their research project posters during the opening reception and attendees will be able to vote for their favorites.  The winner will be announced at the luncheon on May 6th.

Phase III - The Winners! - Read Press Release Here

IHIF is pleased to present the winning team from this year's IHBC Student Research Competition:

MCIT Winning Team
The team from the McKenzie Center for Innovation and Technology
From left to right: Mikayla Burrell, Jesus Bazan, Ahsan Sohail, James Chi
and Kelly Bozoian, Instructor, Project Lead the Way, Biomedical Sciences


The team’s poster was titled: Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Early Detection
, which featured a 3-D printed prototype of a diagnostic sensor.


 Abstract of Winning Poster

Winning Poster


Download .pdf

Lung cancer is the leading cause of death among cancer for Americans. Lung cancer accounts for 13% of all new cases but yet accounts for 27% of all cancer deaths. There are two main types of lung cancer, small and non small. Small cell lung cancer accounts for 10-15% of cases while non-small accounts for the rest. As Diana Poli said in Exhaled volatile organic compounds in patients with non-small cell lung cancer: cross sectional and nested short-term follow-up study “There is therefore a considerable for noninvasive diagnostic procedures aimed at identifying lung cancer at an early stage and adding specificity to imaging techniques.” (Diana Poli, 2005)

    Most current methods are either very expensive or very inaccurate. There have been some devices that have been built that are accurate to detect lung cancer but they are very expensive and require time in order to detect the cancer. At Stanford University, a recent discovery showed that a blood test could reveal lung cancer, while this may be quick and not so expensive, it is inaccurate and would result in many false negatives. The aim of this project is to develop a manner to detect non-small lung cancer that has a very high accuracy and is very inexpensive.

    The use of this technology could especially benefit rural areas of a country where medical attention is hard to get. The technology could be used as an over the counter diagnostic tool that would be very reliable and easy to acquire. The project attempts to use yeast as a biological detection system, that would change colors when in the presence of certain compounds known to be found in a persons breath when they have lung cancer. There are typically alkanes present in the breath of individuals who have lung cancer. Many alkanes have been identified as biomarkers for lung cancer. The alkanes, undecane and 1-hexane, are especially prevalent in the case of lung cancer (Chen, 2007)

McKenzie Center for Innovation and Technology:  Mikayla Burrell, Jesus Bazan, Ahsan Sohail, and James Chi
  Other Competing Posters


 School Student Research Poster Title

Greenfield Central Community High School

Jacob Davis 
Knocking some sense into me: Development of a helmet for flag football players
 To produce a head guard that could be marketed to GYFL (Greenfield  Youth Football League) that could aid in the prevention of head injuries.
Greenfield Central Community High School Tyler Beeson
Immunotherapy for cat allergies
 Creation of a new method of immunotherapy that is less invasive and does not create an immune response for individuals that suffer from cat allergies.
Greenfield Central Community High School Grant Gellert
XLHED: Dental Treatment
Creation of an interpositional allograft from bacterial cellulose that reduces resorption of bone in cranio-maxillofacial surgeries.
Greenfield Central Community High School Nicole Morley
Nanoparticle Based Contrast Agent
Create a nanoparticle that will increase the contrasting of organs during an X-ray.
Greenfield Central Community High School Brenden Gill
Falling Asleep at the Wheel: Alert system for sleeping at the wheel
Design a system that alerts a driver when they are falling asleep at the wheel
Greenfield Central Community High School Allyson Young
Brace for technique: Back brace to promote proper technique in cheerleading
Creation of a back brace that prevents pain by supporting the back and not allowing the back to arch during stunting for cheerleading.
Greenfield Central Community High School Haley Reifel
War of Molecules: nanoparticle detection for Ewing’s sarcoma
Development of a gold core oligonucleotide nanoparticle with ligants that have the ability to identify and destroy Ewing’s Sarcoma cancer cells in the bone marrow. 
Greenfield Central Community High School Sarah Zornes
Chlorine: The Skin's Worst Enemy
Creation of a lotion for swimmers with all natural ingredients to provide a barrier for the skin against the absorption of chlorine and increase their moisture levels.
Greenfield Central Community High School Matt Capen
Is E.coli the Key? E.coli detection and elimination of cancer cells
A modified E. Coli cell containing gold anoparticles and a thermal protein switch bonded to the E. Coli cell’s ClyA protein will be able to kill cancer cells that it is coded to target
Greenfield Central Community High School Rebecca Flora
 New Compression Sleeve
Modifying the varicose vein compression sleeve with a flexinol wire structure will make the sleeve easier to put on and take off
With many thanks to Rebecca Schini, Instructor, Project Lead The Way, Biomedical Sciences, Greenfield Central Community High School


 Going Forward - McKenzie Center and IHIF Partner for Spring Student Internships

The Indiana Health Industry Forum and the McKenzie Center for Innovation and Technology are looking for five companies in the Indianapolis area to host high school senior biomedical engineering students for a 40-hour field experience/internship (free of charge to the company).

These are highly motivated 18 year old students with an interest in a career in the biomedical sciences.  They have completed a four year course of study in the Project Lead the Way biomedical curriculum and will greatly benefit from the experience of working in a professional setting.  

The senior students will need at least 40 hours of experience during the spring semester (Jan-April).  This could include shadowing professionals, assisting with minor tasks associated with a biomedical science career, guided research or laboratory work, observation of procedures, a paid internship, or volunteer work through an already established program.  Ideally seniors would progress to more hands-on work during the course of the experience as health care laws and regulations allow.

For more information on the program and contact
Sweeten the Deal: Companies participating as intern hosts will receive special recognition at the IHIF 2016 Annual Meeting. 

Monday, March 27, 2017