The Garage Goes to Washington

Jun 16, 2017

This week, two student founders had the once in a lifetime opportunity to represent The Garage and Northwestern at a special show and tell event in Washington, DC as part of the “Disrupter Series: Update on IOT Opportunities and Challenges,” organized by the subcommittee of the House of Energy and Commerce Committee, formed to identify policies that could affect technology and innovation in the realm of communications-based products and services. Integrating the Internet of Things into the everyday American life doesn’t come without challenges. From smart cities to medical sensors to self-driving cars, policy makers are aiming to support IoT and address barriers or obstacles to innovation.

In her opening remarks at the event, Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), and representative of Northwestern’s district, talked about the value of of energy generation and medical devices in the IoT “race,” citing them as two important examples of how innovation can benefit the country. Northwestern University also received a special shoutout from Jan, noted as being a “research university critical to the future of innovation.” And here at The Garage, we like to think we have something to do that with.

Two student founded startups, PedalCell and LifeMotion Technologies, were featured at the exhibit representing the world of academic incubators, alongside about two dozen other organizations demonstrating their products and innovations, including Qualcomm, Panasonic, General Motors, Honeywell and Siemens.

Founder of PedalCell, Vishaal Mali (McCormick ‘20), is looking to address the alternative energy crisis through convenient, powerful and wicked cool measures, starting with the ubiquitous bicycle. PedalCell’s goal is to create a bike-powered cellphone charger that will reduce the need for conventional charging methods as well as reduce the use of cars for commuting. Vishaal and his team have been Residents at The Garage, incubating their startup and will also be participants in this year’s Summer Wildfire Pre-Accelerator Program.

Pictured: Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) with student founder of PedalCell, Vishaal MaliLifeMotion Technologies, founded by Northwestern Ph.D student Michael Young, is focused on improving jaw function for patients recovering from Head and Neck Cancers, with an objective to improve function for those suffering from any condition which may reduce jaw mobility. Understanding that one size does not fit all, LifeMotion has provides individualized rehabilitation with technology capable of adapting to a patient’s unique anatomy, making recovery predictable, personalized, preemptive, and participatory. LifeMotion is currently incubating at The Garage.

Pictured: Michael Young, founder of LifeMotion Technologies and Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.)

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