June 21, 2021
On May 5, Broadcom Foundation continued its Asia Pacific University Student Research Workshop (APW) program with a virtual event titled “SMART Healthcare Delivery” focused on healthcare challenges for teenagers, adults and seniors.
This year, 21 students with diverse academic backgrounds and skills gathered from UC Irvine; The University of Hong Kong (HKU); Alabama A&M University (AAMU); and National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University (NYCU), Taiwan. The event was hosted by HKU Professors Shien-Ping (Tony) Feng and Wei-Ning Lee, Student Chair Sijia Wang, and Student Co-chairs Dan Ran and Kaiyu Mu.
APW partners included G.P. Li, UCI, CALIT2 director; Aaron Adams, AAMU, assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering; and Kai-Ten Feng, NYCU, professor and associate dean in the College of Electrical and Computing Engineering.
The universal impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has hastened demand for removing barriers to healthcare. Student-led teams brainstormed, collaborated and presented solutions for “SMART healthcare delivery” for three age categories: teenagers, adults and seniors.
The workshop included presentations by speakers from academia and business: Norman C. Tien, vice president and pro-vice-chancellor (Institutional Advancement) of HKU; Nicole Washington, founder and chief executive officer of Boralogix Inc.; Pantelis Georgiou, reader in biomedical engineering at Imperial College London; and Stephen Kulper, chief executive officer and co-founder of Lifespans Ltd.
“The Broadcom Foundation established the Asia Pacific University Workshop to encourage research collaboration for graduate students and faculty on a theme of current international impact, said Nicolaos Alexopoulos, advisor for university and community relations at Broadcom Foundation. “This year’s focus on healthcare delivery prompted students to identify current or potential health-related problems and yield creative technological solutions for addressing and potentially minimizing those problems.”
“The Asia Pacific University Student Workshop recreated a unique opportunity for the students to contemplate real-world scenarios and experience rapid-fire solution building among a team of individuals they had just met,” said Paula Golden, president of Broadcom Foundation. “Coupled with presentations by some amazing thought leaders, the students got a real taste of what entrepreneurs outside of academia must do to become change agents in their fields.”
The Teenager Group addressed the issue of mental health and cyberbullying. They developed Cyber Peace, a system that incorporates encouragement rather than punishment to help cyberbullying victims, bullies and bystanders.
“Our team chose cyberbullying from an information security, social responsibility, and physical and psychological hazards perspective,” said Teenager Group team member Hsin-Hui Huang, NYCU. “I learned so much from my team members, team leader and teachers. Our team leader, Jessica, taught me how to lead a team through communication with everyone involved, keeping us on task and encouraging us!”
“The leadership experience I gained as a team leader will be invaluable for my future, both as a senior Ph.D. student and in my career,” said Jessica Vidmark, doctoral student, UCI. “I hope to manage my own team one day, and this creative experience has made me both more confident and excited about such a role in the future.”
The Adult Group presented Health Hero, a membership app designed for adults to submit details of non-emergency medical conditions, and then receive consultation services, continuous tracking, and preventive monitoring from independent medical doctors.
The Senior Group identified loneliness and depression among seniors as a problem requiring a smart solution. The Senior Group developed a way for older adults to connect with others in their communities through Smart Life Community, a platform “that integrates different services and senior healthcare,” said Senior Group team member Claire Chaisson, biomedical engineering graduate student, UCI.
“I learned about the pressing need in society to use technology to overcome challenges in healthcare,” said Senior Group team member Alishan Charania, HKU. “This has given me an impetus to learn more about tech applications in other fields like healthcare.”
The students deepened their bond as teammates and new friends through participation in a virtual APW Talent Show that included dancing, cooking a local dish and playing musical instruments. The Best Talent Show winner was the Teenager Group singing “Let It Go” from the Disney movie “Frozen” in five different languages (Mandarin, Korean, Swedish, Farsi and English).
“I enjoyed the talent show as it demonstrated students can connect with each other virtually,” said Feng, associate professor of the HKU Department of Mechanical Engineering. “I think students are learning to work and communicate online, which may have significant benefits like saving time traveling and reducing our carbon footprint.”
“I will take what I learned from this workshop and spread awareness of the reformations that are needed for the global healthcare systems,” said Adult Group team member Phylicia McCoy, AAMU. “This workshop was an innovative experience and a lifelong dream of mine to collaborate with students abroad.”
“This was a truly inspiring event by observing how fellows had worked together as a team starting from fresh ideas and ending with their strategy and plan in tackling health/wellness issues over two months,” Li said. “The international perspectives of their proposed solutions give a more comprehensive approach in dealing with global health issues. I enjoyed the most observing how fellows matured their ideas and came up with a creative working solution. I hope the students have learned to step outside their research comfort zones and think holistically about their solutions, pushing them to become true entrepreneurs.”
Video highlights from the Asia Pacific University Student Research 2021 can be viewed here.