Student entrepreneurs have big ambitions
A medical device for stroke survivors and a monitor protecting people and animals from heavy vehicles are among the ideas to watch from ambitious student entrepreneurs at NUI Galway.
ICTUS Medical and IRIS have been crowned winners of NUI Galway’s inaugural IdeasLab Start100 program.
ICTUS Medical received the overall award for Start100, with IRIS receiving the One to Watch award.
Nine student teams pitched their innovative ideas to a panel of judges from academia, research, industry and business at a special showcase event following an intensive six-week program hosted by IdeasLab.
ICTUS Medical is run by Peter Best-Lydon, a Galway native and recent biomedical engineering graduate, and Ciarán McDermott, a final year electronics engineering student.
They are developing a painless monitoring device that allows stroke survivors to take control of their health by detecting sleep strokes.
“We are absolutely delighted to win. Start100 has been a huge help with all the connections we’ve made,” said Peter Best-Lydon.
“There’s a buzz every week in IdeasLab and it was great to feel like working in a start-up. We’re really looking forward to having a meaningful impact on the patient.”
The One to Watch award went to IRIS, which was co-founded by Keelan Rowley and Michael Dillon, both recent graduates of BSc in Construction and Project Management from NUI Galway.
IRIS is a safety device that can detect the presence of people and animals from machines such as tractors, excavators, dumpers.
An economic device that saves lives and families. Winning this award will allow Michael and Keelan to focus on prototyping and validating their idea.
Start100 is a student entrepreneur incubator program, helping those with an early-stage concept to turn their ideas into potentially invested innovations.
The program offers physical space, key networking opportunities, expert mentorship from alumni and businesses, and a support fund of over €40,000.
Students have access to funds to research and develop their idea throughout the program, and have the chance to win a prize for the final event.
NUI Galway President Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh said supporting their students in their efforts to achieve positive “societal impact” is part of the university’s mission.
“It is a great encouragement to see young people finding solutions to problems through innovation, ideas and solutions,” said Professor Ó hÓgartaigh.
He added his pleasures in seeing them, “to be supported on this journey by our educators, our academic community, and our civic and business networks.”
A summary of the nine projects showcased at the event included:
I said speak – An information awareness video that delves into Irish drinking culture amongst students
Receive relay – Customer insights software for retail and hospitality chains using POS and consumer app integrations
IRIS – A safety device that helps detect the presence of people and animals from agricultural machinery – saving lives and families
Matan Marketing – Digital marketing for gyms
crumple – A spike-proof scrunchie for college students
ThinkingGarden – Self-administered CBT mobile game to reduce anxiety and depression
Datapals.io – A data-driven e-commerce agency that builds and optimizes successful Shopify stores
struts.app – An app that makes it easy to capture patient foot scan data remotely using just a smart phone
Medical ICTUS – A painless monitoring device that allows stroke survivors to take control of their health by detecting sleep strokes