The Pivot and the Phoenix

It’s back-to-school time! While many kids across the country are getting back into the swing of homework and tests, the high school students participating in the CentennialX challenge have been working on an extra assignment all summer—developing solutions to real problems facing our society. Lilly’s TriALL team is no exception.

The challenge at hand was to improve the communication feedback loop between pediatric clinical trial researchers and the International Children’s Advisory Network’s (iCAN) youth advocacy chapters. TriALL took a hands on approach to their research by holding a design thinking workshop with iCAN chapter members. During the workshop, they facilitated conversations about iCAN’s current feedback collection process and gathered ideas for potential solutions.

Once back home from the workshop, the TriALL team used all the information received and connections made to start developing a solution that addressed iCAN’s challenge from the outside. After working on an outside-in approach for some time, they realized that a solution designed to just be handed over to iCAN wouldn’t cut it if they wanted to make a real and lasting impact. Instead, they knew they needed to join forces with iCAN more directly to build a strong partnership between their youth chapters and clinical researchers. This was the pivot. 

Rena Friedant, TriALL’s faculty leader, said the pivot moment  “was almost like the phoenix rising from the ashes. Here’s this whole new direction. And not only is it a direction, but it’s a foundation for a legacy and for really making an impact in an arena that they had no idea even existed before this challenge was presented to them." 

So, what was their final solution? A new iCAN chapter. This approach not only addressed iCAN’s communication challenges but also their desire to expand. 

TriALL’s CentennialX experience encapsulates the beauty and authenticity of the program. With project goals and milestones loosely defined from the start, each team is encouraged to arrive at solutions organically. For teams like TriALL, this may mean that they have to pivot and shift directions midstream—and that’s perfectly okay. TriALL has a long road ahead of them as they work to create a new iCAN chapter, but it is a mission that, if achieved, would have a long-lasting impact on pediatric research.

We cannot wait to see how the new iCAN chapter unfolds! Join us in congratulating and wishing  the TriALL CentennialX team well by leaving them a comment below, or using #CentennialX on Twitter.