Before arriving at the Global Health and Innovation Conference I had many ideals and expectations for the duration of the weekend. Being enrolled in the rehabilitation science stream of the health sciences program, I had planned to attend the presentations that focused solely on physiology and anatomy based concepts. Upon attending the first keynote speaker, I realized that everyone in attendance came from different educational backgrounds that spanned across many different sectors. Many of the speakers were not only knowledgeable about topics regarding health, but had extensive knowledge in areas such as business, marketing, social media, and even the performing arts! This realization opened my eyes to the vast number of opportunities and careers within the health care field that I would have previously never thought possible.
A few of my favourite sessions included topics that were presented under the ‘educational media for health improvements’ category. One presentation in particular explained how Sesame Workshops has created a muppet promoting health related concepts such as proper sanitation and latrine use in countries such as Bangladesh. Another presentation I found memorable, involved the topic of marketing within the health care field, including tips for crowd funding and the use of social media to gain support for health care initiatives.
As a health science student these topics are beneficial because it expanded my current views of health, learning that successful initiatives involve collaboration across many different fields. As a fourth year health studies student I have often been intimidated by the thought of staying within this one field for the duration of my career.
This conference helped me to realize that there is endless possibility, and opportunity within the health care field that doesn’t stop at the functioning of the human body or knowledge of various health care systems. The Global Health and Innovation Conference taught me the importance of collaboration, continuous learning and creative thinking! I now have a new understanding and unique perspective of the health care field that will prove invaluable as I set out to accomplish my own career goals.