MCTM Students Excel in Business Competitions

MCTM Students Excel in Business Competitions

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At the 2017 HCC Newspring Business Plan Competition, Lourdes L. Alberty Chacon, an MCTM Cohort 2 student, won first place among the 300 contestants The competition examined and ranked contestants according to the excellence of their development of a business plan for start-up companies.

Alberty Chacon, a physician, began the MCTM program in 2016 and credits her experience to her success in the competition. The skills that I learned from the program in the fields of economy, finance, marketing and accounting allowed me to understand more about the business side of the competition; so I was able to combine the tech skills from the medical industry with business skills,” said Alberty Chacon.

Alberty Chacon and her teammates trained weekly with mentors for three months to ensure that their business plan was competitive. The fierce competition required contestants to implement a plan that had a marketing plan, accurate pricing, and an exit strategy.

For MCTM students, the multidisciplinary program trains non-business professionals to leverage their life science background with newfound business acumen to encourage innovation in the world of Biotech.

“I have always been passionate about bringing innovation to healthcare,” said Alberty Chacon. “When I discovered that the program addressed all aspects of commercialization in the life sciences and was developed in collaboration with the experts at the Houston Methodist Research Institute, I knew that this was the right program for me.”

Rice Launch Challenge

Marco Morales Garza, an MCTM Cohort 2 student, was one of the top ten finalist at the Rice Launch Challenge. Contestants in the entrepreneurial competition submit their business ideas to compete in either the High Growth Ventures or Small Business Ideas.

“My team worked on a medical device start up and my role was managing the FDA approval roadmap,” said Morales Garza.

Students in the MCTM program learn how to effectively maneuver through the FDA approval process.

What interested Morales Garza was how the MCTM program trains students to combine business and life sciences. “I selected the program because it trains you to understand business, intellectual property, and how it all applies to the clinical translation path,” said Morales Garza.

Morales is no stranger to business competitions. “The MCTM program allowed me to win competitions such as the Texas A&M New Ventures Competition,” said Morales Garza.

Recently, Alberty Chacon and Morales represented the MCTM program at the annual BIO International Convention.

The next cohort for the MCTM program begins Spring 2018. Applications are currently open. To learn more about the Master in Clinical Translation program, visit

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