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School of Engineering community encouraged to attend Orthopaedic Technology and Facility Showcase Oct. 13

September 20, 2022 - by Kim Delker

The University of New Mexico Orthopaedic Technology and Facility Showcase is an opportunity for the UNM campus and surrounding community — including students and faculty from the School of Engineering — to see what the new, high-tech center located in Rio Rancho has to offer.

The showcase, which will take place Oct. 13 in conjunction with UNM Rainforest, will be held in two sessions. Breakfast and lunch will be provided during the showcase portion:

  • 9 a.m.- 2 p.m. Technology and Facility Showcase – featuring technology presentations on new research and innovations in the field of orthopaedics at UNM, and opportunities and resources at the UNM Health Sciences Center of Excellence for Orthopaedic Surgery & Rehabilitation. This will be targeted toward industry attendees, entrepreneurs and investors.
  • 2-4 p.m. Orthopaedic Innovation Champions Roundtable. A discussion of design-thinking implementations and collaboration opportunities with the facility. This is ideal for orthopaedic and medical device industry attendees.

Those interested in attending can learn more and register here.

The two-story, 50,000-square-foot structure is located next to UNM Sandoval Regional Medical Center in Rio Rancho. It opened late last year. It includes exam rooms for patients to consult with surgeons, an extensive orthopaedics research laboratory and a rehabilitation facility for physical therapy. The facility is focused on adult reconstruction of total hip, total knee, foot and ankle, total shoulder, total elbow, total wrist and podiatry reconstructions.

Christina Salas, an associate professor in the School of Medicine’s Department of Orthopaedics & Rehabilitation, also holds a position in the School of Engineering as special assistant to the dean for Health Science Center relations. She said the new facility has greatly expanded her space, technology and ability to conduct her research and work with students. However, the location — which is miles away from the UNM campus — means that many might not be aware of the facility and the opportunities it offers. That’s why she is hoping the showcase will help raise awareness.

“This event is a meet-and-greet and open house for the UNM and the School of Engineering community to learn about the many opportunities for collaboration,” she said. “With this new facility, I was able to go from basically three small rooms of research space to a large lab with advanced equipment.”

While that has meant great things for Salas’ research, she said it is harder to find and connect with students, especially those from the School of Engineering on main campus.

“I wouldn’t be able to do what I do without the students and faculty from the School of Engineering,” Salas said. “I want to maintain that relationship to ensure Engineering is in alignment with the School of Medicine. There are a lot of opportunities for collaboration.”

The event will include orthopaedic-focused technology presentations given by inventors/clinicians; an overview of center initiatives and research programs; facility tours; the Orthopaedic Innovation Champions Roundtable; student poster sessions; one-on-one meetings; and networking opportunities.

Keynote speaker for the event is Douglas Ziedonis, executive vice president of UNM Health Sciences and chief executive officer of the UNM Health System. Additional speakers include Salas and Elizabeth Kuutila, CEO and chief economic development officer for UNM Rainforest Innovations.

The event is being held in conjunction with UNM Rainforest Innovations and UNM Center for Excellence for Orthopaedic Surgery & Rehabilitation.