Last week I had an awesome opportunity to attend the XPrize Visioneering Day. If you aren’t familiar with the XPrize Foundation, they are a non-profit that makes it their mission to encourage breakthroughs that benefit humanity, especially ones that will result in forming new industries and markets that don’t exist or are stuck. They address Grand Challenges by creating prizes to make an incentive for competitors to achieve the goal. It’s a really great Foundation, and I got to spend the day with students from Annenberg, Viterbi, and Marshall working with the XPrize staff and USC faculty to talk about a new XPrize. We were focused on issues surrounding non-communicable diseases. Throughout the day, we heard multiple speakers. There was also an artist who created posters depicting what we were talking about. It was really cool to watch her work throughout the day.


The chart the artist drew during opening comments


The first speaker was Dr. John Lasch, a professor at USC. He also teaches a class around the XPrize challenges. I have a lot of friends who have taken the class or are in it now, and everyone really loves it.


Dean Yortsos also came to speak!


It was also really cool to hear Dean Yortsos speak! He made some very interesting points about what’s needed in the health care field and in research in the future. Then we got to break out into groups and discuss what we felt were the most harmful diseases and design a prize around them. I loved getting to talk to people from other areas of study and with USC alums who had more knowledge about the field. We came up with a lot of cool ideas!

The prizes we came up with!

We also got free breakfast and lunch, which I always appreciate! All in all it was a great day and I definitely walked out inspired by the XPrize Foundation and with a lot more knowledge about issues of global health than when I went in.