Twelve CMTI students from the Department of Biomedical Engineering visited Welch Allyn in Skaneateles, NY during its 100th anniversary. Welch Allyn, one of the largest medical device manufacturers in Upstate NY, built the first ophthalmoscope in 1915 and has a long history of developing innovative products used by clinicians around the world.
Students had a rare opportunity to peak into the design process utilized by engineers in creating the next generation of diagnostic tools. John Lane, Director of Electrical Engineering and Technology Development, presented an overview of the stage-gate process utilized by Welch Allyn in developing new medical products. The presentation provided examples of how customer needs and market demands have influenced the path of product development. Craig Meyerson, a System Engineer, and Ed O’Neil, PhD. (Manager of CAPA support) also provided their insights into the product development process.
The presentation was followed by a tour of the research and production facility at their State Street location in Skaneateles. Students saw production lines for ophthalmoscopes, otoscopes, electrocardiology and blood pressure diagnostic instruments.
“It was great to go to Welch Allyn and see a company that is applying everything we have learned in class. They talked about how to go out and do ‘Voice of the Customer’ for each of their products that go through R&D. This is exactly what we do with our program.” – Kierstan Ryan
“Visiting Welch Allyn gave me an insider’s perspective as to how real medical device companies translate clinical ideas into actual medical products.” – Laura Hobbs
“The Welch Allyn trip provided an essential exposure to a real medical device manufacturer by allowing students to witness how the medical device industry utilizes the same techniques and principles that the CMTI program fosters. The facilities tour and overview of the Welch Allyn design process demonstrated how applicable these developing skills really are, and left us with a unique sense of comfort knowing that we are more equipped to handle the demands of the industry and compete on a professional level within the job market.” – Nathan Couper
“Having the opportunity to visit Welch Allyn exposed me to the inner workings of a medical device company. I found it very valuable to get a sense of this atmosphere and know what to look for when deciding on a medical device company to work for.” – Debbie Cooper
Company tours exclusive to the CMTI students provide invaluable insight into their future careers as design engineers in the biotechnology industry. The CMTI is extremely grateful to Welch Allyn and its staff for this unique opportunity.