on January 18th, 2017

One of our EIT students has had us thinking about the essential pairing of biomedical engineering and sport. Steve Parchert is completing our Advanced Diploma of Applied Electrical Engineering and should have his head down, but instead has his feet up!

As the image below indicates all is not as it seems. Steve is post-op and has logged into his scheduled webinar! Commitment and tenacity are descriptors that come to mind and are well deserved.

Steve Parchert EIT student of Advanced Diploma of Applied Electrical Engineering post-op

He enjoys a range of sports which have lead to his injuries. Touch football and endurance motorbike riding are the culprits for Steve. Five or six years ago he had his first ACL knee reconstruction. This operation is necessary when the ligament attaching the femur (or thigh bone) to one of the calf bones (the tibia) is torn. At the same time his knee’s shock absorbers, the cartilage and menisci, were repaired.

And he is back again!  This time, however, the surgeon had to be a little more inventive. A graft from Steve’s hamstring needed to be taken to supplement the twice damaged ACL ligament.

Amateur or elite involvement in sport and fitness is on the rise and should be championed. With Steve in mind this seems a lame comment (excuse the pun), but studies have clearly illustrated that keeping fit allays a plethora of disease. Because there is no free lunch, however, medicine and engineering have become essential bedfellows. Biomedical engineering and its research are integral to the treatment of sport injuries and, more encouragingly, their prevention.

Our lives are, however, multi-faceted and this is succinctly reflected in Steve’s case. Aside from his sport and his hospital stay with associated injuries, he is busy. He is a dedicated family man and is working in Bundaberg as an Electrical Systems Designer in the power supply industry. And, as mentioned previously, he is studying. His obvious commitment here he explains, is to secure his job and perhaps facilitate a promotion within the company. With this careful juggling of a demanding life, Steve is grateful that EIT’s flexible online learning has helped him balance it all.

Engineering Institute of Technology