MSL Symposium

MSL Symposium

The 3rd Annual MSL Symposium

On May 6-7, 2021 the MSL hosted the 3rd Annual Symposium, “At the Intersection: STEM, Law, Business, and the MSL,” bringing the MSL community together virtually to showcase the importance of cross-disciplinary awareness at the intersection of STEM, law, and business – the type of thinking that is at the heart of the Master of Science in Law program.

Symposium highlights included:

  • Two presentation sessions, during which students shared their work and insights on a range of subjects, including artificial intelligence, criminal justice policy, medical device entrepreneurship, Rights of Nature legislation, political polling, and many more
  • A keynote address by Tadeu Carneiro, Chairman and CEO, Boston Metal

The full event schedule:

Thursday, May 6, 2021
5:45 - 6:00 PM CT | Gather and Welcome
6:00 - 7:00 PM CT | Keynote: Tadeu Carneiro, Chairman and CEO, Boston Metal

Friday, May 7, 2021 
9:30 AM - 12:00 PM CT | Student Presentation Sessions
5:00 - 7:30 PM CT | Student Presentation Sessions

Please see below for a sampling of this year's presentations:

AI Integration in Medicine: Case Studies and the Legal Challenges they Present, Dan Kinstedt (MSL ’21)
This presentation will explore three current AI use cases in the medical field – ranging from diagnostic to clinical trials – and the potential legal risks they pose. It will also cover prominent legal, regulatory, and ethical concerns, as well as prospective solutions. 

Analyzing Global Cosmetics Regulations, Aishwarya Raj (MSL '21)
This presentation will compare regulatory frameworks governing cosmetics in different jurisdictions.  It will look at the scope of regulations, how those regulations apply, and at the impact of regulations on product safety.

Analyzing the Performance and Value of 2020 Election Polls: How to Better Consume Polling Data, Stella Wu (MSL '21)
This presentation aims to answer the following questions:

  1. How divergent were the 2020 election polls from the actual result – where and why did such divergence occur?
  2. Was there any systematic bias in the polling, and if so, which candidate was most affected? 

By examining these questions, I hope to share advice on how to be a more informed consumer of data when interpreting and commenting on future election polls. 

Clinical Research Regulation – How Hollywood Can Help, Jill Woodman (MSL '22)
Clinical research has multiple layers of regulation designed to protect patients and ensure that their participation is safe, meaningful, and worthwhile.  Yet, Hollywood portrays clinical research as if it is a very unregulated and unsafe process, and this may hamper patient participation. If Hollywood were to accurately portray the process of clinical research, patients would better understand the protections and procedures and would be more likely to participate in the process of clinical research.

COVID-19, Depression, and the Public Health Implications, Brittanie Clarke (MSL '21), Erica Leser (MSL '21), and Nevena Aleksic (MSL '21)
The COVID-19 pandemic has broad implications for the future of public health. Through a quantitative analysis of current mental health data, we examine how different population groups were affected by the pandemic. Such an analysis allows us to anticipate future needs in health policy. 

Criminal Justice Policy and Racial Disparities: the Illinois Department of Corrections as a Case Study, Yasmine Ramachandra (MSL ’21)
This year, Illinois became the first state to abolish the cash bail system, and we know that other monumental reforms are on their way.  But what effect have past reforms had on shaping the prison system, and have they influenced population demographics? How can this analysis inform future advocacy? Please come to learn more about the effects Illinois criminal justice policy has had on inequalities in the system.

FullCycle: Our Entrepreneurship Journey to Diagnosing Endometriosis, Karyssa Clark (MSL ’21), Rakshitha Kamath (MSL ’21), Yasmine Ramachandra (MSL ’21), and Alexis Smith (MSL ’21)
This presentation will discuss FullCycle, a company that was born in the Entrepreneurship Lab class. FullCycle seeks to diagnose endometriosis early and non-invasively. We all know someone with endometriosis, so please come to learn more about an entrepreneurial approach that will address gaps in the care of this serious disorder.

Monitoring and Oversight of Clinical Trials: The Internal Audit Function, Kara Ferracuti (MSL '22)
Many entities facilitate proper monitoring and oversight of clinical trials, including the Food & Drug Administration, Institutional Review Boards, and sponsors. Even with all this oversight, clinical study teams need to do more to ensure they are in compliance with applicable rules and regulations. The internal audit function should be a standard part of clinical research to help identify non-compliance, ensure the protection of human research subjects, verify the accuracy and reliability of data, and improve site processes and staff training. 

MSL: A Year in Entrepreneurship, Elizabeth Bailey (MSL '21), Brent Halvorson (MSL '21), and Peter Lee (MSL '21)
Despite coming from varied experience and educational backgrounds, our team had a common interest in exploring the realm of entrepreneurship. Thanks to the innovative MSL curriculum and powerful program network, we were able to dive into the Chicagoland startup scene and discover new career opportunities and interests. In this presentation, we will highlight our entrepreneurial journeys through the MSL program.

Navigating Regulatory Waters: Confronting the Public’s Problem with PFAS, Madeline O’Dwyer (MSL ’21)
It is now estimated that 98-99% of humans have industrial PFA​S (Per- and polyfluoroalkyl Substances) in their blood. The EPA's proposed rule to address this problem is deficient, as it lacks proper testing methods and sampling decisions. Remedying the proposed rule requires the consideration of factors such as environmental justice, health of vulnerable groups, and the use of best available technology.

Shaping Healthcare Policy: Inserting the Voice of the Rare Disease Patient, Monica Weldon (MSL '22)
Rare diseases in the United States are an unrecognized public health burden; rare disease patients face delayed diagnoses, limited or non-existent treatment options, and lack of access to appropriate care.  The pathway to improving the landscape is including the patient voice and using it to mobilize legislation that will better address the needs of those with rare diseases.

Turning People into Trees: Advocating for Natural Rights in American Law, Michelle Carter (MSL ’21)
America is desperately searching for policy solutions to mitigate environmental damages as the climate crisis worsens. One solution is giving legal rights and personhood to natural features. This talk will introduce the basis for these rights, explain the history and current issues in natural policy, and outline the future of rights for nature in America.

Zero to One: A Medical Device Story, Kan-Min Steven Hsu (MSL '21), Kimberly Ransom (MSL '21), Vishal Shah (MSL '21), and Ian Welsch (MSL '21)
Our company, VIKS, is born out of the MSL Entrepreneurship Lab class. United by the desire to improve patient care, we merged our business, legal, and technical backgrounds to create a healthcare solution. This presentation is a behind-the-scenes look at our journey – from ideation to a product solution. 

The 2nd Annual MSL Symposium

The 2020 symposium, held May 8, 2020, featured virtual poster presentations, during which 17 MSL students displayed their work and ideas on a variety of topics, ranging from artificial intelligence to cannabis legalization. Please see below for links to those recorded presentations. 

Addressing the Rising Rates in Medical Malpractice, Radhika Raturi (MSL ’20)
This presentation focuses on medical malpractice and, in particular, on disparities in medical malpractice rates across jurisdictions. By exploring administrative, legal, medical, bureaucratic, and cultural frameworks, the presentation will attempt to shed light on this complex topic.  

AI: The Next Microwave Oven, Sanaz Zahedi (MSL ’20)
AI is a fast-emerging and captivating area of interest that is flattening the world. Despite major breakthroughs in AI, why are organizations not adopting it and what are the key barriers to the adoption of AI? 

Correlation Between Crimes and Proximity to Police Stations in the City of Chicago, Aaditya Rawal (MSL ’20)
This presentation explores crime data provided by the City of Chicago, using an algorithm that looks at the crimes and the distance from the closest police station in an attempt to discover interesting relationships found in the data.

Closing the Gap in Healthcare Disparities of African American Women in Cancer Clinical Trials, Bridgette McCullough (MSL ’20)
This presentation details the creation of a new company, Acirah, whose goal is to recruit, enroll, and monitor participation of African Americans in clinical trials. Acirah also aims to ensure that the African American community will be better served by existing healthcare delivery systems.

Deep Learning in Healthcare, Tiffany Zhao (MSL ’20)
Artificial intelligence and deep learning are at the forefront of modern technological innovation. From neural networks to ethics, this presentation covers the significance of deep learning and potential applications in healthcare.

Health and Human Rights: Access to Health Project, Orkidea Bajrami (MSL ’20), Amie Patel (MSL ’20) and Keerti Tadimeti (MSL ’20)
The interdisciplinary Access to Health Project (ATH) brings together students and faculty to work in consultation with marginalized communities to assess health needs, and to design a targeted, sustainable approach.  Our team served as ‘consultants’ to an organization that focuses on helping women and children in Greece; we looked at how cultural mediators can use technology to facilitate accurate information exchange between community workers and migrants.

International Team Project (ITP): My Big Fat Greek Economic Crisis, Winisha Smith (MSL ’20)
The International Team Project (ITP) course brings together students who undertake a semester-long research project focused on a particular country, culminating in field study work in that country.  Though the field study did not take place this year, this presentation focuses on the Greek economic crisis of 2009, providing an economic snapshot, a look at affected industries, brain drain, and the current state of Greece a decade later.

Out-of-Pocket Medical Costs for Disadvantaged Populations, Eric Ni (MSL ’20)
The study examines out-of-pocket healthcare costs within the United States healthcare model, specifically exploring three patient populations: older patients, diabetic patients, and individuals diagnosed with Down Syndrome.

Potential Benefits and Risks of Federal Legalization of Cannabis, Joe Parrish (MSL ’20)
This presentation explores opportunities and risks associated with federal cannabis legalization – both medical and recreational – in the United States, including an analysis of problems that could potentially be solved by cannabis legislation. 

Project Traffic Light: Identifying Victims of Human Trafficking in the Justice System, Eric DeChant (MSL ’20)
Victims of human trafficking are often arrested for crimes they are forced to commit. Using expert knowledge gleaned from senior judges, Project Traffic Light will demonstrate analytical tools built to help judges identify and extricate these defendant victims from lives of servitude.

Say What? Communicating to the Masses, Katherine Culbert (MSL ’20)
Technical information can be very informative, but it can also be very difficult to understand. This presentation shows how the same information can be presented in different ways, and how those different ways can affect the recipient’s understanding of the material.  This information is especially important to know when communicating complex technical information to those who do not have a technical background.

The Biotechnology Patent Landscape, Jill Crich (MSL ’20) and Cristina Craig (MSL ’20) 
Acquiring patent protection for biotechnology is a complicated process and the current patent law landscape poses many obstacles. We will explore the current challenges biotech firms face while trying to secure IP protection for their life-saving innovations, and also how current policies may dis-incentivize innovation in this area. 

Understanding the Healthcare Regulatory Process and Constraints, Aishwarya Raj (MSL ’20)
This presentation highlights the changing needs of the pharmaceutical industry as well as various regulatory timelines and stipulations for different pharmaceutical products.  The current COVID-19 pandemic will provide some context for this exploration.  

Venture Strategies through Case Examples, T. Alastair DeNova (MSL ’20)
A dive into strategies used by early-stage and evolving companies who aim to be at the forefront of the innovation economy. Presentation will cover companies in varying industries highlighted in the MSL course: Cases in New Venture Strategies. 

Inaugural MSL Symposium 2019

The MSL Inaugural Symposium featured a poster presentation session where students displayed their work on a variety of projects at this all-important intersection, a keynote address by Dr. Norbert Riedel, and live presentations from student projects on a range of topics, including artificial intelligence, genomic data, medical device entrepreneurship, health and human rights, and the space industry.