Health Sciences education at UPES is tech-ahead and research-driven
From new age programs and specialisations such as Biomedical Engineering and Genomics, to collaborating with industry and academia for research, education at UPES School of Health Sciences and Technology is aligned with the rapid technological and research advancements in the field
We are living in an era wherein the healthcare industry is witnessing technological breakthroughs every day. New therapies based on gene editing, genotyping, gene therapy, and stem cell research are expected to shift the focus away from cures and toward prevention, particularly in diseases like cancer, diabetes, neurology, and cardiovascular disease. Advanced technologies such as 3D printing of cells and organs, nanobots and nanochips for diagnostics, drug delivery and monitoring, and artificial organs have received a lot of attention. Prosthetics and exoskeletons, as well as predictive analytics and wearable healthcare monitoring devices, are expected to revolutionise disease prevention, diagnosis, and treatment, giving patients far greater control over their health.
Keeping pace with the technological advancements in the field, UPES School of Health Sciences and Technology offers new-age programs and specialisations such as Clinical Pharmacokinetics and Regulatory Affairs, Dietetics and Holistic Wellness, Nutraceutical and Nutritional Policy, Food and Environmental Microbiology, and Medical and Pharmaceutical Microbiology.
Says Smriti Arora, Assistant Professor at UPES School of Health Sciences and Technology (SoHST), “We are starting two courses this year: Biomedical Engineering, where Engineering and Life Sciences come together to bring solutions in healthcare and research; and M.Sc. Genomics, which is going to be the next frontier in health sciences. These programs have components of technology, application and healthcare. We also have ongoing tech-ahead programs such as Biotechnology.”
SoHST fosters a culture of research and collaboration through transdisciplinary and practical learning that prepares students for the future. Aside from classroom instruction, students receive clinical and community experience to help them become active change-makers and solution providers in the healthcare industry. “There are UPES-funded seed projects in collaboration with the UPES School of Engineering, wherein we are working on water technology, which can contribute to the sustainability of the environment. We also team up with the UPES School of Computer Science, where they add the tech component, and we bring in healthcare insights,” Smriti adds.
The industry-aligned curriculum, developed with the help of industry and academic experts who serve on the SoHST’s Board of Studies and Industry Advisory Board, and active collaborations with industry leaders, enable students to gain the professional abilities needed to address the world’s health concerns. The emphasis is on project-based learning, which helps students develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills. “There is a project where we are working on individual responses to the Covid vaccine using a biomedical device, which can be made in India. This can contribute to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of self-reliance. In the material department, we have researchers working on biosensors, which can have many uses for the environment and healthcare. Thus, we have been successfully integrating technology and research in health sciences education,” says Smriti.
Undergraduate students at UPES School of Health Sciences and Technology are heavily involved in research projects, having published patents and research papers, given presentations at international conferences, and collaborated with faculty mentors on editorials. Students also intern with non-profits, start-ups, government agencies, and industry, exposing them to real-world issues. They interact with industry experts who share their knowledge, ideas, and professional experiences.
UPES School of Health Sciences and Technology has signed agreements with several prestigious medical institutions such as AIIMS Rishikesh, Drishti Eye Institute and Taipei Medical University. The partnerships seek to promote research and development, academic excellence and exchanges among students and faculty, as well as encourage joint participation in international conferences, seminars and workshops.
Over the next decade, the healthcare industry is expected to grow at a double-digit rate. Apart from traditional healthcare jobs like medical doctors, nurses, and physiotherapy, the industry has developed new opportunities in areas like pharmaceutical sciences, biotechnology, microbiology, wellness, food technology, and more.
The technology and research-driven education at UPES School of Health Sciences and Technology enables students to work in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, clinical research, food and wellness industries, as well as in production quality control, quality assurance, regulatory affairs, product design, formulation research, drug discovery and development, pharmacovigilance, diagnostics, scientific or medical writing, and other fields. Nutritionists, dieticians, pharmacists, regulatory officers, researchers, and intellectual property officers are some of the career pathways they can pursue after graduating from the university.