Our Summer 2024 NextGen Cohort starts June 3rd.

Spring 2024 NextGen Cohort

This cohort was Hardware Park's first with college and high school students. This students worked on an ambitious device aimed at combatting the opioid crisis.
Cohort Size
12 Students
Cohort Date
Spring 2024
Cohort Project
OD Revive
Duration
Spring Semester

Reflecting on the second NextGen cohort at Hardware Park

In Spring 2024, Hardware Park's latest NextGen cohort took on an ambitious project: developing wearable technology to detect opioid overdoses in partnership with Birmingham startup OD Revive. This initiative reflected Hardware Park's commitment to addressing critical real-world issues through innovation and engineering education. The program was delivered in partnership with Bessel, an impact accelerator for medtech startups and teams.

The Cohort

The NextGen cohort comprised dedicated high school and college students:

  • High School Students:
    • Kaleb Newton - Ramsay High School
    • Amber Moore - Ramsay High School
    • Daniel Dominguez - Carver High School
    • Caren Smith - Woodlawn High School
  • UAB College Students:
    • Bella Capaldo - Biomedical Engineering
    • Daegan Benjamin - Biomedical Engineering
    • Dexten Retchloff - Biomedical Engineering
    • Sree Nataraj - Biomedical Engineering
    • Ty Dailey - Biomedical Engineering
    • Isabella Tirelli Rebolho - Biomedical Engineering
    • Mo Overstreet - Mechanical Engineering
    • Dawson Culver - Engineering Design

The Opioid Crisis

The opioid crisis has severely impacted communities, with Jefferson County, Alabama, seeing a sharp increase in overdose deaths, particularly those related to fentanyl. OD Revive, led by CEO Kyle Berman, is creating a device that monitors vital signs and alerts emergency contacts during an overdose, enabling timely intervention. Berman, a former heroin addict, was able to deliver personal stories that helped guide the students' design and engineering decisions.

Program Highlights

The program brought together a diverse group of high school and college students from various educational backgrounds. This mix fostered a collaborative environment where different perspectives and skills were leveraged to create innovative solutions. Guided by industry experts, including Chris Danek, founder and CEO of Bessel, the students benefited from mentorship that enriched their learning experience. Danek’s extensive experience in medtech innovation was instrumental in guiding the cohort through the project.

Community engagement was a key component of the program. Interactions with local health authorities and recovery communities provided students with a broader understanding of the opioid crisis and highlighted the importance of community-focused solutions. The technical excellence of the participants was evident as they worked on advanced engineering tasks, such as implementing blood-oxygen sensors and GPS locators, gaining valuable skills in biomedical engineering.

Quotes

“The people who would buy OD Revive would be the loved one, hospital treatment center, harm reduction organization, nonprofit for distribution, court system, community centers and insurance companies,” Berman said. “There’s never been a greater need as it pertains to preservation of life. And that’s our goal is to save people’s lives.” - Kyle Berman

Media Coverage