Students Awarded for Healthcare Innovation in Student Pitch Competition

CBU’s Centre for Health, Wellness and Extended Learning, in partnership with Nova Scotia Health, recently hosted a student pitch event featuring students with innovative ideas to support healthy people and communities. The call for presenters was open to CBU students and recent graduates as well as those from Nova Scotia Community College. With training and mentorship from CBU’s Island Sandbox, students presented their business ideas to a live audience, including local high school students, during an on-campus event.

A judging panel awarded three students with prizes, including monetary awards and ‘past the pitch’ mentorship to help students explore ways to advance their health innovation concepts. This includes access to consulting from IP Advantage on establishing intellectual property, free memberships at Makespace and Life Sciences Nova Scotia, and support from Navigate Start-Up House.

Dr. Tanya Brann-Barrett, Associate Vice-President of Academic and Research, says the health challenges considered by the student innovators are aligned with the priorities facing Nova Scotia communities. “We are so thrilled to see students reflecting on the healthcare needs of our communities,” says Dr. Brann-Barrett. “They are lending their skills and their innovative spirit to contribute to positive health outcomes.”

First-place honours were presented to Leela Manasa Manthena and Manisha Ramkissoon. They received $2500, thanks to Invest NS, to build a business around their idea titled Care Bears. They propose to connect volunteers with elderly people through an app, meeting needs that may include companionship, appointment escort service and meal support. The customer base includes people who want to support elderly family members but no longer live close by, or who have challenges with their schedules.

Samantha Tobin, a former Teacher Assistant pursuing a Bachelor of Arts at CBU, secured $1500 thanks to a contribution from Nova Scotia Health Innovation Hub as the second-place winner. Samantha’s concept, True Visual, is an app designed for teachers, parents and caregivers, offering an effective communication tool to engage children with autism.

Kanika Sharma received third place honours and $1000, thanks to sponsorship from CBU Canadian Recruitment, for a waste diversion concept. From Peel to Protein examines the opportunity to create a single-cell protein using waste potatoes, with potential to be used as a healthy food additive or supplement.

The competition received additional support from Springboard Atlantic and various departments within CBU. Congratulations to the winners!