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Finalists, Runners-up and judges present for the 2023 App competition.

Winners announced for 2023 OSU App Competition

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Media Contact: Asia Allen | Innovation Foundation Communications Coordinator | 405-744-6930 |

McNeal and McGrail
From left: Finalist Vaness Oliphant, finalist Reanea McNeal and judge Jennifer McGrail present for the 2023 App competition in the Social category.

The 2023 Oklahoma State University App Competition recently crowned its champions across multiple categories, celebrating technological excellence and innovation. 

This year's competition witnessed a diverse range of cutting-edge app ideas that promise to reshape industries and improve the way people live and work. In a record-breaking year for innovation and creativity, the App Competition saw an unprecedented surge in participation, receiving an all-time high of 99 app ideas submitted.

“One of the key outcomes we want to achieve via this competition is to stimulate the creation of new app ideas. We had a record-breaking year in terms of participation and are looking forward to assisting the winners in developing their ideas further,” said Dr. Jai Rajendran, who leads the OSU App Center. 

With a diverse and dynamic pool of contributors, this year's competition attracted the talents of 41 faculty members, 59 students and nine staff members from a diverse discipline, including participants from all colleges including the OSU Institute of Technology. Notably, the competition also saw the active engagement of 34 undergraduate students, showcasing the institution's commitment to fostering a culture of innovation at all academic levels.

Ideas were judged in four categories: Applied Research, Health and Human Performance, Social, and Energy. Energy was sponsored by Baker Hughes. Health and Human Performance was sponsored by the Human Performance and Nutrition Research Institute. A panel of judges from Oklahoma Center for Advancement of Science and Technology, Baker Hughes, Canopy HealthTech, and the Innovation Foundation at OSU evaluated the six-minute pitch from the top 12 app competition contenders. Their insights and discerning assessments played a pivotal role in shaping the outcome of the competition and elevating the overall standard of innovation. 

“In an era where technology has the potential to enhance well-being, creating apps that empower individuals to actively participate in their health journey is not only a noble pursuit but a crucial step towards a healthier society,” said Lance Walker, Rick and Gail Muncrief executive director of HPNRI. “The transformative impact of innovative apps in promoting physical well-being cannot be overstated, making it imperative to focus on solutions that resonate with users and contribute to lasting improvements in health and human performance.” 

Joyce and Walker
Finalist Jill Joyce (left) and judge Lance Walker present for the 2023 App competition in the Health and Human Performance category.

The winners showcased not only technological prowess but also a commitment to addressing pressing global challenges. The 2023 App Competition highlighted the transformative power of technology and its capacity to drive positive change. Additionally, the competition fosters an entrepreneurial spirit, showcasing how creative ideas can be transformed into impactful solutions, inspiring students and faculty with an interest in developing solutions that will have a positive societal impact, said Dr. Reanae McNeal, finalist in the 2023 app competition social category.

“We are deeply honored and delighted as a team to have been finalists in the app competition. Developing this app idea to address the real-world needs of Black women’s health and wellness was a powerful journey that pushed boundaries in applying our community-engaged research through the power and innovation of technology,” McNeal said. “I am grateful for the collaborative efforts of our team and our opportunity to contribute to better health outcomes for Black women in Oklahoma and nationally. 

“This win reinforces our commitment to pushing the boundaries of what is possible with community-engaged research and using technology as a tool for positive change. I look forward to continuing this journey of innovation and exploration with my dedicated team and contributing further to the ever-evolving landscape of app development for a more socially just world.”

The winners and runners were collectively awarded $10,000 for their participation. 

App Competition Winners:

  • Energy: EnvironmentProtect, an app that instructs users on how to safely dispose without harming the environment, by Sonal Badhe, a student in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
  • Social: Black Women Sister Care is a culturally specific health justice tool grounded in extensive community-engaged research, centering the mental-physical-emotional-spiritual health of Black women and connecting them to resources for better health outcomes, by faculty member Dr. Reanae McNeal and students Marqua Harris and Vanessa Oliphant, Department of English. 
  • Health and Human Performance: My DQ Trak, an app that turns meaningless nutrition numbers, like grams of magnesium consumed, into meaningful and intuitive dietary quality (DQ) scores to track nutrition, by faculty members Dr. Jill Joyce, Dr. Allison Hepworth and student Grace White, Department of Nutritional Sciences. 
  • Applied Research: Prescribed Burn Planner, a weather alert app for burn planning, by faculty member John Weir, Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management.
  • Best Student Idea: Sonal Badhe for EnvironmentProtect.

App Competition Runners-Up:

  • Energy: EcoSavvy, an app to empower users to live a more sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle, by student Sam Baldauff, Business School.
  • Social: OSUR, an app that connects faculty with undergrad students, by faculty member Dr. Hadi Noori, Departments of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. 
  • Health and Human Performance: The MAP App, a tool that provides a therapeutic experience as users are guided through the process of developing purpose, by faculty members Ty Gregson and Dr. Gina Peek, Department of Family and Consumer Science Extension.
  • Applied Research: Engine Audiologist, an app to diagnose engine problems via sounds analysis, by faculty member Hector Garrido Guevara, School of Transportation and Heavy Equipment, OSUIT.

Honorable mentions:

  • Energy: SolarShare, an app for enabling the sharing of solar energy, by student Manoj Kumar Reddy Gongati, Department of Computer Science.
  • Health and Human Performance: Walking Analysis and Training for Additional Well-Being, an app to assess and reduce gait asymmetry, by faculty member Dr. Jerome Hausselle, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.
  • Applied Research: PorousMatPro, an app to determine the strength of a material by using image and AI, by graduate student Mohammed Mahdi, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.
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