Home Newsroom Fourteen Teams Selected for 2017 Do Good Challenge Semi-Finals

Fourteen Teams Selected for 2017 Do Good Challenge Semi-Finals

The Do Good Institute is excited to announce the selection of the 2017 Do Good Challenge semi-finalists. These teams will compete for the opportunity to advance to the Do Good Challenge Finals where they have the chance to win a share of more than $20,000 and present in front of a panel of expert judges and an audience of hundreds.

A total of 14 teams were selected as semi-finalists, from more than 90 teams. Teams are addressing social issues ranging from environmental sustainability to food insecurity to the world refugee crisis. Teams are led by students representing College of Arts and Humanities; College of Behavioral and Social Sciences; College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences; James Clark School of Engineering; Robert H. Smith School of Business; and the School of Public Health.

2017 Ventures

Annie’s Children

Working to empower children in orphanages throughout developing countries, Annie’s Children assembles and publishes folk stories translated into English and illustrated by children in Ukranian orphanages. The sales profits from these books funds training programs (IT, coding, entrepreneurship) for the orphans. Annie’s Children established a new partnership with a Russian orphanage, secured nonprofit discount rates on book publishing, raised more than $500, published 300 books, and was able to provide baby formula and clothing to a Filipino orphanage. They are currently developing a partnership with a local Montessori school, an online Ukraine store, and a private children’s bookstore in Baltimore.  

  • Anastasiia Polyakov, Senior, Robert H. Smith School of Business
  • Katie Aranas,Senior, Robert H. Smith School of Business
  • Lara Martin, Senior, College of Arts and Humanities
  • Dewan Kazmi, Senior, Robert H. Smith School of Business
  • Tais Krylova, Junior, Robert H. Smith School of Business

Bee’s Needs

The Bee’s Needs aims to support local beekeepers in their efforts to maintain a beehive to support pollination of crops and produce. Right now, bees and beehives are declining in the U.S., with entire colonies collapsing and massive population die-off. Honey bees pollinate $30 billion worth of crops in the U.S. and their declining rates stand to threaten not only agriculture but the economy. The Bee’s Needs partnered with local Boy Scout Troop 740 and the DC Beekeepers Alliance to build and sell 17 low-cost beehive boxes for the community. The group plans to start an annual beehive box building event that works with local scout troops, beekeeping clubs, and student volunteers.  

  • Amanda Hobgood, Freshman, James Clark School of Engineering
  • John Hoerauf, Freshman, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Noah Fogelson, Freshman, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Dan Kossoy, Freshman, Robert H. Smith School of Business

James Hollister Wellness Foundation

James Hollister Wellness Foundation (James Hollister) saves viable medications for developing nations while reducing the toxic pollutants resulting from pharmaceutical and medical waste. Through a three-pronged approach, James Hollister recovers medications that have been labeled as expired, tests them to ensure they are still viable by FDA standards, and distributes them for charitable purposes in accordance with the World Health Organization. James Hollister Wellness Foundation was able to fundraise more than $10,000 to purchase medications at reduced rates, will provide medications for an estimated 11,000 low-income citizens during mission trips to Ghana and Honduras and began the clearance process to continue negotiations with divisions of the Federal Drug Administration in order to scale their impact.

  • Matthew Hollister, Junior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Stefano Brugnerotto, Junior, Finance, Loyola University Maryland

Kodactive

Kodactive aims to make computer science more accessible through a project-based platform that uses interactive, immersive, programmable STEM toys. Kodactive’s first toy is a RC car, equipped with sensors that can be programmed through a mobile application and a drag and drop coding interface. Students move through lessons on the app, starting with basic fundamentals and advancing to more complex concepts to make the toy car self-driving. Kodactive conducted a workshop with 20 students at the Community School and has been able to secure $2,000 in funding from CG Ventures. Through feedback sessions with HopHacks and Women in Computing and upcoming workshops scheduled for Charles Carroll Middle School, Kodactive is prototyping and iterating their curriculum and products to move towards mass production.

  • Zachariyya Khan, Freshman, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Tamer Bader, Sophomore, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Travis Ho, Freshman, James Clark School of Engineering

Nourish: Mommy and Me

Nourish: Mommy and Me supports maternal and infant nutrition by providing one-days’ worth of nutrient-dense, vitamin-rich meals to low-income mothers. The group creates Nourish Boxes filled with ingredients and recipes for three healthy meals. By working with the Pregnancy Aid Center in College Park, Maryland, Nourish was able to provide 30 boxes to expecting mothers. They raised more than $700 and expect to deliver a minimum of 5 boxes a week until the end of the Spring 2017 semester.

  • Sabrina Pasta, Junior, School of Public Health
  • Joanne Vanderheyden, Senior, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Sarah Dudley, Sophomore, College of Arts and Humanities
  • Catie Medlock, Senior, College of Arts and Humanities

Pinpointer

Pinpointer is a crowd-sourced navigation mobile application that helps to enhance emergency and medical delivery and navigation services in Nepal. Delivery response time for these services are significantly longer in areas of Nepal where there are no street names or home addresses. Pinpointer uses digital addressing to generate a custom digital code to convey an exact home address. Pinpointer has built a beta version of their application and has conducted tests in downtown Kathmandu and partnered with the Nepalese Adoptive Family Association to begin supporting the facilitation of food and vitamin delivery to 12 orphanages across Nepal.

  • Samrat Jha, Junior, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Eric Wallace, Junior, James Clark School of Engineering

Symbiont Health

Symbiont Health LLCis developingan automated fall detection system to reduce the number of geriatric falls. Unlike the popular medical alert system Life Alert, this device would detect falls through motion sensor and gyroscopic technology. By connecting primary care physicians with their patients, the device will also collect real-time, vital diagnostic information used to reduce emergency responder time. Symbiont Health has been able to develop a minimally viable product, conducted interviews with more than 50 stakeholders, developed partnerships with Arden Courts Memory Care Communities in Kensington, Maryland, and MedStar Innovation Institute, and is on their way to clinical trials.

  • Erich Meissner, Junior, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Maria Chen, Sophomore, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Daniel Rosenberry, Junior, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Nick Hricz, Sophomore, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Kyle Liu, Freshman, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences

2017 Projects

Colleges Against Cancer

Colleges Against Cancer supports the fight against cancer by raising money for the America Cancer Society (ACS) and educating local youth about cancer prevention strategies. Funds raised by community teams contribute to lodging, research, information, peer support and more to survivors, patients and their families. Colleges Against Cancer has raised $30,000 with 420 registrations for Relay for Life, scheduled for April 22. Through the Al-Huda School, they were able to host a Relay Recess event with 100 children. Relay Recess provided two servings of health snacks, facilitated games and educated students about preventative cancer strategies related to tobacco and UV rays. Colleges Against Cancer aims to raise $60,000 by April 22 with 850 volunteers.

  • Kevin Cartwright, Sophomore, Robert H. Smith School of Business
  • Emma Jablow, Sophomore, College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
  • Keith Wise, Junior, College of Arts and Humanities

Greek Life Serves

Greek Life Servesworks to fight food insecurity in the Washington, D.C. area.Members of the Greek community donate one in-house meal and send it to homeless and at-risk communities. Fraternity and sorority chapters donate, deliver and serve meals to these communities. Target Express, Jason’s Deli and UMD Dining Services provided in-kind material donations of insulated bags and serveware. A record 17 chapters were able to leverage 47 volunteers and served 980 individuals at the Boys and Girls Club of Mississippi, Boys and Girls Club of Benning Road, the Central Union Mission, and the CCNV. 

  • Daniel Katz, Junior, Robert H. Smith School of Business
  • Julia Pennington, Junior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences

Oxfam at UMD

Oxfam at UMD aims to raise awareness about the world refugee crisis and support humanitarian aid for refugees through fundraising. They hosted various education and advocacy events including a homemade documentary screening, a t-shirt campaign fundraiser, a Global Justice Shabbat Dinner, an Inclusion Gallery Walk, the Oxfam Jam Benefit Concert and a Hunger Banquet. The Hunger Banquet simulated food scarcity for more than 50 participants who experienced either low, middle or high socioeconomic setting in a dinner setting for the night.

  • Autumn Thompson, Junior, College of Arts and Humanities
  • Nicole Moy, Senior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Nishka Hatten, Junior, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Tolu Obalade, Junior, College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
  • Yacine Bai, School of Public Health
  • Sean Strader, Junior, College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
  • Tracey Zhai, Senior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Mary Chidera Uwadineke, Senior, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Preventing Sexual Assault

Preventing Sexual Assault (PSA)aspires to change the culture of sexual assault in all communities at the University of Maryland by educating the community, supporting survivors and advocating for change. PSA works to make certain the voices of survivors are heard, rape culture is combated and every new class of students can have equal access to education free from sexual violence. PSA raised more than $9,000 and hosted several events through the year, including the Occupy McKeldin 12-hour sit-in, fundraisers at College Park restaurants and a “Slut Walk” to end victim blaming. One event, Real Talk, will be featured in a NBC Universal documentary titled Tamron Hall Investigates: Campus Sexual Assault.  

  • Alanna DeLeon, Senior, School of Public Health
  • Natalie Cabezas, Senior, Robert H. Smith School of Business
  • Colleen Connolly, Senior, School of Public Health
  • Jillian McGrath, Senior, College of Arts and Humanities
  • Ariel Sirota, Junior, College of Education

She’s the First

By raising funds in the form of scholarships, She’s the Firstaims to support girls from low-income countries become first-generation scholars and community leaders. She’s the First hosted a multi-organizational event for International Day of the Girl and multiple fundraisers, including a special Valentine’s Day delivery event. The chapter at University of Maryland was able to sponsor a She’s the First scholar, 14-year old Meaza in Ethiopia. They were able to fundraise more than $2,000, which will provide two full scholarships or two years of secondary education.     

  • Shivani Bhangley, Senior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Sarah Taylor, Junior, James Clark School of Engineering
  • Sarah Geotz, Senior, College of Education
  • Geetika Reichmann, Senior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Deepak Salem, Senior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Sri Saikrishna, Junior, James Clark School of Engineering

TerpThon

Terp Thonis the largest student-run philanthropic organization at the University of Maryland. Year-round fundraising efforts culminate in a 12-hour Dance Marathon each March where students stand in support of current and former patient families of Children’s Miracle Network Hospital. TerpThon hosted various events, fundraising activities, and awareness campaigns including Hoops for The Kids: Lights n’ Sirens Edition, in partnership with the College Park Police and Fire Departments and Rush to Raise, a Greek chapter competition that raised more than $60,000 in just 24 hours. All funds go directly to the Children’s National Health System with previous years’ contributions resulting in the opening of the Fetal Medicine Institute and the purchase of new echocardiograms for the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit. TerpThon engaged with more than 30 patient families, registered more than 3,000 University of Maryland students for the Dance Marathon, and raised an astonishing $1,000,000 – all For the Kids.  

  • Kevin Bock, Senior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Bianca Fiore, Junior, School of Public Health
  • Amara Fox, Sophomore, School of Public Health

Vintage Voices

Vintage Voicesaims to improve the mental health and quality of life for elderly living in long-term care facilities through the power of music. With an increasing aging population, coupled with the need for residential senior homes, Vintage Voices hopes to support quality care that supports emotional and mental wellbeing. By focusing on service, philanthropy and advocacy, Vintage Voices hosted 8 performances at 7 different senior living communities, fundraised more than $1,000, collected 20 iPods, and gave “GeriTalks” to more than 200 students.

  • Becky Goodridge, Junior, College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
  • Michelle Glazer, Senior, College of Arts and Humanities
  • Jennifer Holler, Junior, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences
  • Anabel Reynolds, Junior, School of Public Health
  • Andrew Lazara, Sophomore, College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences