HITS supports research innovation at Cores Technology & Services Showcase


A woman and two men are behind a table. The table has flyers for customers to take.

Deb McCaffrey, Ryan Echlin, and Sean Quinn from HITS shared the latest research and general computing services.

The latest technologies and services available in biomedical research, all in one place.

The Core Technology & Services Showcase on June 7 brought hundreds of faculty, students, and staff from the Biomedical Research Core Facilities (BRCF) together with dozens of partner vendors, including Health Information Technology & Services.

Cores are centralized facilities or labs that offer shared services, shared equipment, resources, and expertise to biomedical researchers and investigators on a fee-for-service basis. Staffers from HITS Research Engagement team were on hand to share HITS services like the Electronic Research Notebook and the Research Computing Package that help streamline processes and reduce costs for researchers.

Research IT Program Director John Brussolo was met with enthusiasm from HITS customers. “The BRCF Showcase is always a great venue for us. It was rewarding to have many researchers who we work with regularly approach us and give us kudos for the services we provide or seek us out for additional opportunities to help them,” said Brussolo. “We were also able to highlight existing services, and hear researchers say ‘tell me more’. We really enjoy the engagement with the Michigan Medicine research community.”

Three women face away from the camera and are leaning over a table. Four people are facing the camera and are teaching the women about computing services.

Researchers gather around the HITS table to learn about research and general computing services.

Deb McCaffrey, research computing facilitator, knows technology and science. “It’s important to attend events like this because researchers aren’t always aware that there is a team that’s dedicated to helping with research technology. I appreciated going because I could learn more about all services available to researchers. My goal is to help them no matter what they need.”

HITS product and application manager Ryan Echlin said, “I enjoy this event a lot. It gives me a opportunity to connect with the Core Facilities staff I support, as well as their customers. Attending the Showcase with my colleagues from Research Engagement and Help Me Now means we can answer almost any question that comes our way.”

Sean Quinn, end user computing specialist senior, from Help Me Now was on hand to highlight how HITS can assist researchers with their general computing needs. Help Me Now is a walk-in service that has transformed face-to-face, on-demand support.

“Thanks to everyone for making this event such a success! We got to speak to a lot of folks about Help Me Now offerings, and drummed up a lot of interest in research services. We also got a small handful of service tickets taken care of,” Quinn commented. “It was great to be able to help people right there at the event.”

Author: D. Stephanie Dascola, Medical School Office of Research

Stephanie is a communications manager at the Medical School Office of Research. Contact her at sdascola@umich.edu.