Invitation to Cover

PHILADELPHIA –  A two-day, marathon competition to win $10,000 hosted by Penn Health-Tech, a partnership of Penn Medicine and Penn Engineering, will feature 22 teams of Penn students creating devices with the potential to solve real-world health care needs. Unlike traditional “hackathons” that focus only on software, the Rothberg Catalyzer is a “makerthon,” requiring each team to come up with a physical prototype.

For example, the team that won the inaugural Rothberg Catalyzer developed a virtual reality system for epilepsy screening in children that featured a headset designed to look like Batman’s mask. After working all night on their prototypes, each team will pitch them to a team of experts in fields such as health, engineering, and entrepreneurship. Ultimately, the panel will choose a slate of winners, with the top team taking home the $10,000 along with an opportunity to further develop their product through Penn Health-Tech.

WHERE: Towne Building, 2nd Floor, 220 S. 33rd St., Philadelphia, PA 19104

WHEN: Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018
              9:30 AM – 12:30 PM
              9:30 AM: Mentor Discussion
              10:30: Final Pitch Practice


  • Jonathan Rothberg, PhD, event namesake, founder and CSO of 4Catalyzer
  • Victoria Berenholz, executive director, Penn Health-Tech
  • Vanessa Chan, professor of Practice Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Penn Engineering
  • 22 design teams of Penn students

Penn Medicine is one of the world’s leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation’s first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $7.8 billion enterprise.

The Perelman School of Medicine has been ranked among the top medical schools in the United States for more than 20 years, according to U.S. News & World Report's survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $425 million awarded in the 2018 fiscal year.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System’s patient care facilities include: the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center—which are recognized as one of the nation’s top “Honor Roll” hospitals by U.S. News & World Report—Chester County Hospital; Lancaster General Health; Penn Medicine Princeton Health; and Pennsylvania Hospital, the nation’s first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional facilities and enterprises include Good Shepherd Penn Partners, Penn Home Care and Hospice Services, Lancaster Behavioral Health Hospital, and Princeton House Behavioral Health, among others.

Penn Medicine is powered by a talented and dedicated workforce of more than 40,000 people. The organization also has alliances with top community health systems across both Southeastern Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey, creating more options for patients no matter where they live.

Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In fiscal year 2018, Penn Medicine provided more than $525 million to benefit our community.

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