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Clinton Global Initiative University – 2017 project descriptions

Public Health Focus

Hewale – Founded by three undergraduate students from Ghana:  Dennis Nyanyo (A&S; Biology ’18); Sena Katako (A&S; Mathematics ’19); Samuel Opoku-Agyemang (A&S; Computer Science ‘ 19), this team is developing an electronic medical record that will improve the workflow of Ghanaian hospitals as well as increased efficiency for hospital management. Equally important, patient satisfaction will increase due to decreasing the amount of time individuals and family members spend waiting in the hospitals.

Madhur Srivastava, Ph.D. student in the Meinig School of Biomedical Engineering and doing research at the National BioMedical Center for Advanced ESR Technology (ACERT) at Cornell,  has partnered with Ruisheng Wang (also a Ph.D. student in Biomedical Engineering) to develop a proprietary signal de-noising algorithm which can potentially be applied to reduce MRI signal acquisition time.  As a software-based approach, the technique can be integrated with existing instrumentation with no hardware modifications.  For the next phase of development, they will carry out a two-part clinical validation study conducted in collaboration with the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and Weill Cornell (WCMC).  Their vision is for a world where access to early disease diagnostic technology enables increased quality of life and lifespan for all global citizens.

Education Focus

Danindu Udalamaththa, (Human Ecology, Cornell Institute for Public Affairs, MPA candidate) has been working since January 2016 on a student networking platform that includes: a chat room function segregation by class assignments and discussion threads, a voting function to help identify material for which a large number of students are struggling, calendar function for managing and requesting individual or group meetings, a survey function, and ultimately a plagiarism detection software.  By improving student to student and student to instructor collaboration, Danindu believes academic performance improvements – especially in STEM – will be realized.

Maximus Academy – Vivian Utti (CALS ’19) and Ada Amadi (CALS ’18) in conjunction with Abdou Thiam (Cornell ’17) have been developing a promising business skills accelerator that serves the Senegalese community by instilling valuable vocational skills in teenagers with developmental disabilities. In addition to fundraising, the founders  are working to expand their network of vocational partners and are creating an on- the- ground team in Senegal to handle the operational aspects of their commitment to action.

Nevertheless, She Persisted Girls in STEM workshop series – Qiuwei Yang (ENG ’18) and Cynthia Lin (A&S ‘18)  have been working with Women in Computing at Cornell to organize a Girls in STEM Leadership Summit for middle and high school girls. The first summit held in September had 10-15 attendees.  They are currently recruiting college students to act as mentors in the program, planning activities for the next workshop including promotions to reach local students and parents.  

Orisun Summer Institute for the Creative Arts – Kanyisola Obayan (Ph.D. canidate,  African Studies) along with Jessica Obilon, Anjola Coker and Ibijoke Oke (all MPA’16) are using the creative arts to engage Nigerian youth. The objective of their committment to action is to improve students’ digital media literacy which will empower the students to be more effective as socially engaged citizens. In addition to pursuing direct partnerships with private schools in Lagos, Nigeria, the team is seeking connections to brands like Sony, Canon, Adobe, Microsoft and HP who they would like to engage as technology partners as they refine their program design.

Spect Deanna Deyhim (CALS ’18) is helping students develop emotional regulation tools to deal with challenges through virtual reality mindfulness training. Deanna initiated her project in March 2017 and has begun pilot testing her program in an Ithaca area middle school. Her current big challenge is raising money for the VR equipment needed to expand the program to charter schools and prep schools.  She is currently looking for new connections with VR manufacturers and others developing VR applications.