Last month the UNH-InterOperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL) and the Peter T. Paul Entrepreneurship Center (ECenter) collaborated to host the annual Hack New Hampshire event. Undergraduate and graduate students across all colleges were invited to participate in a two-day event to create a solution to “Help New Hampshire.” Last year’s event was held entirely virtual, this year students were invited to participate in-person at the IOL among industry mentors and peers.
This year, a total of six teams participated to “create a solution for New Hampshire that focuses on helping a chosen audience live a healthy lifestyle in our ‘new normal’”. Teams developed ideas that ranged from mental health support, physical health assistance, and animal therapy. Teams were eligible for cash prizes in the Best Working Product or Creative Impact Category, with an overarching prize given to the Best Overall in either category. Prize money totaled over $2,000, thanks to generous sponsors, Bottomline Technologies, Arista Networks, and Liberty Mutual Insurance.
Over 20+ attendees came together across several of the University’s colleges including the Paul College of Business and Economics (PAUL), the College of Liberal Arts (COLA), the College of Life Sciences and Agriculture (COLSA), the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences (CEPS), and the Graduate School.
Below are the summaries of each teams projects:
Best Total Package: UP
“UP: Unturned Page” by Emily Abrusci ‘25 (COLSA), Allison Martin ‘24 (COLSA), Sia Manna ‘25 (CEPS), and Catrina Janos ‘24 (CEPS)
An app designed to tackle mental health problems, “UP” aims to leave “no page unturned.” To begin, users would download a questionnaire and receive a response back with daily recommendations and inspirational quotes for solving problems. The app itself would be customizable and fully regulated by the user which allows for more open communication and flexibility. Behind the scenes, statistics will be used to track a user’s goals and moods to view over time. Today, this all female team is working with UNH’s Psychological and Counseling Services (PACS) to test out their app in the real world.
Best Working Product: Break Bot
“Break Bot” by Oliver Willis ‘24 (CEPS), Jon Doherty ‘25 (CEPS), Andrew Butler ‘25 (CEPS), and Sean Connors ‘25 (CEPS)
At work, everyone needs a break, but it can be difficult to regulate this on our own for maximum productivity. “Break Bot,” a Google Chat Bot, works to facilitate improved mental breaks in a user-friendly, community environment. The Bot would display break activity through small, guided break periods at no cost to company time. In doing so, users can remain in more focused states and improved moods. Additionally, the app would provide a cloud service to display all people in the domain. User-friendly, “Break Bot” would only use a few commands, so anyone can learn how to navigate its user interface.
Best Creative Impact: Ani-Meeter
“Ani-Meeter” by Connor Marvin ‘25 (CEPS), Kevin Guzman ‘25 (CEPS), and Nicolas Zerbinopoulos ‘25 (CEPS)
For many of us, quarantining during the COVID-19 pandemic left many experiencing lower levels of happiness and productivity. To combat this, “Ani-Meeter” aims to improve their users' lives through the help of animals. By using their app or website, users are connected to local shelters for animal interaction. People in the presence of animals have been proven to be happier and show improved mental health.
Additional Participating Teams & Solutions
“RepTrack” by Aaron Limbat ‘24 (CEPS), Cameron Lee ‘24 (PAUL), Kyle Manley ‘25 (PAUL), and Will Dunbar ‘24 (COLA)
Exercise is one of the most effective ways to increase mental health, but showing up to the gym and staying consistent can be a difficult task especially when you are not familiar with working out at a gym. RepTrack serves as an AI personal trainer that guides you through your workout to help people become familiar with the exercises and have a beneficial workout. A tablet device attaches to any workout equipment that you can easily scan with your phone, which then tells you how to perform the exercise and how many sets and reps to do.
“Venture” by Cornelis Plomp ‘22 (CEPS), Dylan Terenzoni ‘23 (CEPS), Harrison Geissier ‘22 (CEPS), and Nick Kahn ‘22 (Graduate School)
During the pandemic people were lonelier than ever, with quarantine and isolation it was difficult to maintain friendships and have a social life. But now that the pandemic has subsided people are looking for those social connections again, but it can be difficult to know where to start. Venture is an app that helps people rebuild friendships by connecting them to social events in their area. It is as simple as creating an account and selecting your interests. The app takes care of the rest by selecting an event based on your needs.
“Social Spark” by Caroline McCarthy ‘24 (PAUL), Charles Stumpf ‘22 (CEPS), and Timothy Clocksin ‘22 (CEPS)
Now that the pandemic has subsided and people are getting back to their “new normal”, people are struggling with social anxiety now more than ever. Social Spark is an app that helps people find social events based on their personality and their likes and dislikes. This platform takes the stress out of finding an event. Based on a detailed analysis and questionnaire the app can provide event recommendations in your area. After you have attended the events you can give your feedback for future Social Spark users.