Hackathon team working on teen health

Exeter students exhibit entrepreneur skills in healthcare hackathon

Three teams of students from diverse backgrounds and departments came together this weekend to design tech solutions for better healthcare.

The three day hackathon, supported by two major technology companies, gave University of Exeter students the opportunity to put their entrepreneurship skills to the test and create products that could improve the health and wellbeing of the nation.    

A hackathon is an event where people come together to solve problems - often using technology to kick start innovation.

Around 20 students were involved in the marathon weekend session tackling topics such as healthy ageing, social isolation and teenage health.

Over the course of the weekend the students exhibited a wide range of skills from teamwork and leadership to product design and marketing.

The healthcare hackathon was the brainchild of Dr Genevieve Williams who is an expert in Biomechanics at the University of Exeter and has set up several hackathons before including during her time at CERN (European Council for Nuclear Research).

Genevieve says: “The students achieved an extraordinary amount over the weekend and they were the best outcomes I have ever seen from a three day hackathon.  

“Bringing together different talents and skills over a focused period of time can be a brilliant and effective way to solve problems. Great ideas or products come from creative collaborations and there is no better way to use time, technology and knowledge than to improve health and wellbeing.

“The teams this weekend have come up with great potential products which we now need to test further and develop with colleagues in healthcare and business. The weekend isn’t just about creating the next big product though, it is also about experience and learning. We want our students to develop new skills and tools to be successful in their careers as well as apply their knowledge to solve real world problems.”

Without giving too much away the teams used the very latest technology to come up with a new safety system for mobility scooters, an intuitive technology platform that would tailor support for young people suffering with mental health problems and a smart, simple touch screen device in the home to help carers look after people with dementia.

Each team will now develop their ideas with support from the University of Exeter innovation team and access specialist advice for student start-ups though ‘Think.Try.Do’

Find out more about Think.Try.Do here: http://www.spaceforsuccess.co.uk/ttd/  

The healthcare hackathon was supported by the Students’ Guild Alumni fund.

Date: 4 April 2019

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