Brian Burack, a first year computer science student at Northern Virginia Community College, had great success at LongView International Technology Solutions’ first HackDC event in September. Burack and his teammates were recognized for creating the Best Mobile App for Clinicians during the weekend-long event.
Burack and his teammates developed “myBivy,” a mobile app that can be used on a smart watch to help monitor a veteran’s sleep patterns and track data about whether the veteran has night terrors or exhibits any other symptoms of PTSD while resting. With the data generated by myBivy, clinicians can use the information to treat veterans. The goal is to decrease the frequency of night terrors and other PTSD symptoms.
HackDC 2015, a hackathon hosted at Richard J. Ernst Community Cultural Center, attracted students from several different colleges and universities in the northern Virginia area and across the nation.
During HackDC, the participants worked with clinicians and veterans to develop different mobile apps that could help with managing PTSD. Through the hackathon, LongView encouraged collaboration and also raised awareness about PTSD, which affects one in three troops returning home to the United States.
“This was my first time participating in a hackathon and the whole event highlighted the importance of PTSD awareness and creating something that could help each individual and their family,” Burack said. “We didn’t do this just to make an app but this team wanted to help solve a problem because we’re very aware that PTSD affects veterans and can also tear families apart.”
Burack worked with Tyler Skluzacek of Macalester College; Damola Adediran and Sarah Kirby of University of Maryland – Baltimore County; and Sravya Kalva of George Mason University. The team won $1,500 for their efforts and have plans to continue to develop the app in hopes of changing lives. They first hope to raise funds and receive support through a Kickstarter campaign.
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Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through the Extended Learning Institute. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site, www.nvcc.edu.