Healthcare Makerthon

The NYU Healthcare Makerthon is a high-energy opportunity to work alongside passionate members of the NYU community to solve for unmet needs in healthcare. Over the course of the weekend you will experience the rush of being challenged and thinking on your feet with your multi-disciplinary team and industry mentors.

The event will culminate with a finale-pitch off where teams will compete to win over $5,000 in total prizes. RSVP for the finale pitch-off on November 29th from 5:30-7:30pm at the Leslie eLab!

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  • Healthcare Innovation Challenges

    The 2018 Makerthon challenges teams to develop technologies/solutions which address wellness and healthcare needs for the aging population. Read more about the three challenge tracks below, or RSVP for the Makerthon Weekend below, to get started!

  • Who Should Attend?

    The goal of the NYU Healthcare Makerthon is to foster cross-disciplinary collaboration across the NYU community to create innovative solutions to healthcare challenges. Whether you’re a current student, researcher, faculty or staff/administrative member from any NYU school, college or institution, you will fit right in! Please note: Only current NYU and NYU Langone Health students, faculty, researchers and staff are invited to attend all Healthcare Makerthon events. No members outside of the NYU community (including Alumni) will be allowed into any Healthcare Makerthon event.

    Q: Do I need to be a CURRENT NYU student, faculty, researcher or staff member to participate in the Makerthon Weekend?

    • Yes. If you intend to compete as an individual in the NYU Healthcare Makerthon, you must be a current NYU student, faculty member, researcher or staff member. If you intend to compete as a team, all members of your team must be current NYU students, faculty members, researchers or staff members.

    Q: I’m a healthcare practitioner, what do I get out of the Healthcare Makerthon?

    • Be a part of a practitioner-led innovation
    • Learn how to take an idea from concept to prototyping
    • Learn how to prototype solutions to healthcare’s most pressing challenges
    • Work on a multi-disciplinary team of engineers and designers
    • Connect with healthcare entrepreneurs and investors

    Q: I’m an engineer or a developer, what do I get out of the Healthcare Makerthon?

    • Try new APIs and use cutting-edge healthcare sensors
    • Diversify your portfolio with healthcare projects
    • Work on real, pressing problems with healthcare experts to build the right solutions
    • Receive guidance from industry experts
    • Rapidly and iteratively build MVPs based on customer insights

    Q: I’m a business student, what do I get out of the Healthcare Makerthon?

    • Experience a rapid, weekend-long bootcamp in venture creation - Connect with healthcare entrepreneurs, investors, sponsors, and industry experts in the NYC venture and startup community
    • Meet and work alongside engineers and developers as a team
    • Pitch to investors and potential to win awards and prize money
    • Get out of the case-study mantra and apply your business acumen to solve real-world challenges

    Q: I’m a designer, what do I get out of the Healthcare Makerthon?

    • Apply your design skills to real-world challenges to create positive impact for people in need
    • Rapidly and iteratively prototype potential solutions
    • Create human-centered solutions that make it easier for patients to maintain vitality
    • Diversify your portfolio with wellness and healthcare projects
    • Work alongside experts and a multi-disciplinary team of healthcare providers, engineers and business practitioners to co-design solutions

    Q: How many members should an NYU Healthcare Makerthon team include?

    • A team should ideally include 3-4 members. No more than 5 members may participate in a team.

    Q: How can I form a team?

    • Get a head start by finding a team/teammates via the Makerthon Slack Channel, (please use your NYU email address to register or email if you have a Stern or NYU Langone email URL)
    • Can't make it to the The Challenge Announcement & Teammate Hunt? No problem! The Makerthon Weekend will include time for networking and additional team building, on the first night, Friday, October 26th.
  • What are the Judging Criteria and Prizes?

    Q: What is the Judging Criteria for the Healthcare Makerthon Weekend?

    Ideally, this Challenge will yield ideas that are impactful, actionable and innovative. The Challenge is looking for solutions based on the following criteria:

    1. Health and wellbeing. Allowing older adults to live the life they want for as long as possible is at the heart of this Challenge. The Challenge is looking for solutions that revolve around individuals and caregivers. The impact of your idea will be measured by how much it improves or maintains quality of life for older adults and their caregivers.

    2. Team. Is your team multidisciplinary (engineers, healthcare/life sciences, business, designers and others), and otherwise diverse (mix of genders, backgrounds, skills)? Why might you be the right team to tackle this challenge and solution?

    3. Affordability. The solutions developed should be financially accessible. As you build out your idea, consider who will bear the cost.

    4. Natural integration. Fresh ideas for any of these challenges should seamlessly fit into the user’s lifestyles. Did your team speak to users or customers to validate the problem? Have you thought about the user experience of your solution and does it fit within the workflow of the user?

    5. Prototype Execution. How might current behaviors suggest powerful new solutions? Is your prototype the right solution for the problem you’re solving? What key benefits does the prototype provide, or what key pain points does the prototype solve for?

    6. Market Viability. How might your idea become a solution for a large number of people - in other words, what’s the larger market opportunity? What solutions already exist in the market? How is your team’s solution unique or better than what’s currently on the market?

    Q: What are the prizes for the Makerthon?

    Innovation with the greatest impact and feasibility is top of mind and will receive financial awards - $10,000 to teams (reimbursable expenses), as well as the chance to compete for additional financial awards through peer programs: the NYU InnoVention Challenge ($50K in total prizes) and the NYU Aging Incubator Challenge ($10K in total prizes). Moreover teams will receive support to further develop the idea into a viable business through workshops, mentoring with domain experts, business model experts, design experts, and investors.

    Makerthon Weekend Prizes (October 26-28th): During the Makerthon Weekend, teams will compete to win $5,000 (reimbursable expenses) in total prizes and about four teams will advance to Phase III of the NYU Healthcare Makerthon, Venture Support and Final Pitch-Off, to compete for an additional $5,000 (reimbursable expenses).

    Final Pitch-Off Prizes (November): During Phase III YOU will receive access to business model and venture coaches, attend skill-building workshops and receive other resources. At a final pitch-off in late November, one final team will be selected as the grand prize winner, and awarded an additional $5,000 (reimbursable expenses).

    Post-Makerthon Prizes: Additional prizes for select Phase III winners include automatic selection into InnoVention, into the January Term Startup Sprint, and into the NYU Aging Incubator challenge. Last year's Makerthon winners went onto win the InnoVention Competition (second place), Mission Appossible, and be selected for the January Startup Sprint, Summer Startup Sprint, and NYU Summer Launchpad, and are currently building and scaling their ventures!

    Q: Who are the judges for the Makerthon Weekend?

    Allan Chochinov - Chair MFA Products of Design at the School of Visual Arts, Co-founder and Partner at Core77

    Allison Becker - NYC Ambassador at Aging 2.0

    Dr. Paresh Shah - Clinical Professor, Department of Surgery, Vice Chair of Quality and Innovation in Surgery and Chief, Division of General Surgery at NYU Langone Health

  • Makerthon Dates and Times

    Makerthon Calendar, Start to Finish

    The Makerthon is three phases from October 11th-the end of November. All activities take place at 16 Washington Pl., New York, NY 10003.

    Phase 1: Challenge Announcement & Team Mate Hunt; Thursday, October 11th, 5-7pm. If you missed the team hunt, join the Slack Channel,, to find a team, or find team mates on Friday night of the Makerthon!

    Phase II: Healthcare Makerthon Weekend; October 26th-28th; RSVP here. A full agenda for Makerthon Weekend is below.

    • Day 1 - Fri, Oct 26 (6:00 pm - 10:00 pm) at Leslie eLab, 16 Washington Place: Keynote presentation and team formation
    • Day 2 - Sat, Oct 27 (8:30 am - 10:30 pm) at Leslie eLab: Customer discovery, prototyping & business model design with expert mentors; API presentations
    • Day 3 - Sun, Oct 28 (8:35 am - 5:30 pm) at Leslie eLab: Business model design and solution finalization; Afternoon pitch-off for judges and Makerthon participants

    Phase III: Venture Support & Final Pitch-Off; November - Invite only for teams advancing from Phase II, and final pitch off on November 29th! RSVP below.

    Makerthon Weekend Agenda, October 26-28th, 2018

    Day 1 - Fri, Oct 26, 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm: (NOTE: Attendees may attend opening talks only, without participating in whole weekend)

    • 5:45 pm: Doors open
    • 6:10: Kickoff presentations by NYU Entrepreneurial Institute team & NYU Aging Incubator
    • 6:25: Keynote presentation by Jeffrey Dachis (Steinhardt '92), Founder and CEO, One Drop
    • 6:50: Student perspective talk by Darya Moldavskaya, Co-Founder, ReverCare
    • 7:00: Student perspective talk by Sabina Braverman (Wagner '18), Co-Founder and CEO, Health Huddle
    • 7:10: Makerthon Weekend logistics
    • 7:20: Team formation (for those participating in the challenge)
    • 9:00: Event concludes & teams check out
    • 10:00: Space closes - get some sleep!
    • Food will be provided

    Day 2 - Sat, Oct 27, 8:30 am - 10:30 pm: (NOTE: Attendees must attend all weekend activities)

    Morning: Problem Framing & Customer Discovery

    • 8:30 am: Doors open, breakfast & team check in
    • 8:50: Talk - Morning kickoff by NYU Entrepreneurial Institute team, led by Dee Dao, NYU Entrepreneurial Institute
    • 9:00: Talk - Empathy building with aging adults, led by Anne-Laure Fayard, NYU Tandon School of Engineering
    • 9:30: Talk - Framing the problem, led by Dee Dao, NYU Entrepreneurial Institute
    • 9:40: Team work time - Problem definition prep
    • 10:00: Team work time - Customer discovery (interviews) with aging adults
    • 11:30: Team work time - Problem definition

    Afternoon: Solution Ideating, Business Model and Prototype Design

    • Noon: Lunch
    • 12:20 pm: Talk - Designing for accessibility, led by Mithru Vigneshwara (Tisch ITP,'18), NYU Ability Project
    • 12:40 pm: Talk - Designing for empathy, led by Ab Brody, Aliviado Health, Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing
    • 1:00 pm: Talk - Solutions & Go to Market, led by Rebecca Silver & Dee Dao, NYU Entrepreneurial Institute
    • 1:15: Team work time - Solutions Brainstorm!
    • 2:00: Team work time - Business Models & Prototyping; Mentors available with clinical expertise; Prototyping Lab opens
    • 4:00: Team work time continued - Business Models & Prototyping; Mentors available with business model & design expertise

    Evening: Team Work Time

    • 6:00: Dinner & team check in
    • 6:30: Team work time
    • 10:30: Leslie eLab closes

    Day 3 - Sun, Oct 28 (8:15 am - 5:30 pm): (NOTE: Attendees must attend all weekend activities)

    Morning: Team Work Time and Pitch Prep

    • 8:30am: Doors open, breakfast & team check in
    • 9:00: Talk - Pitching 101, led by Frank Rimalovski, NYU Entrepreneurial Institute
    • 9:20: Team work time - solutions and pitch creation (continue through 2pm)
    • 11:00 am - 1:00 pm: Mentor Office Hours - Pitch practice (20 minutes per team) with NYU Entrepreneurial Institute team & NYU Aging Incubator

    Afternoon: Pitch & Reception

    • Noon: Lunch
    • 2:00: Pitch presentations due
    • 2:30: Pitch off in front of judges, to compete for $5,000 (reimbursable expenses), advancement to next round of Makerthon and other prizes
    • 4:30: Closing reception & awards
    • 5:30: Leslie eLab closes
  • FAQs

    Q: If I am a member of a winning team for Phase II, do I need to continue to the final phase (III) of the NYU Healthcare Makerthon?

    We strongly encourage all members of winning teams from the Makerthon Weekend to participate in Phase III of the NYU Healthcare Makerthon, in which YOU will receive access to industry experts and to the NYU Entrepreneurial Institute team of startup experts.

    Q: What tools will be available to help me prototype my solution?

    You are welcome to bring your own, however, we’ve amassed a great toolset of APIs, materials, and resources to help teams prototype solutions. A full list of resources available to Makerthon Weekend participants can be found here. Demos of APIs will be given during the Makerthon Weekend. Please check the Agenda section of this website to find out about API demo days and times.

    Q: What if I can only attend part of the Makerthon Weekend?

    We encourage all participants in the Makerthon Weekend to stay for the entire weekend session. If for whatever reason you can’t attend the entire weekend, please communicate this directly with the members of your team ahead of the Makerthon Weekend to ensure fair expectations are set.

    Q: Will food be provided at the Makerthon Weekend?

    Yes, full catering will be provided for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and other refreshments will also be provided throughout the weekend.

    Q: Do I need to bring my own laptop for the Makerthon Weekend?

    Yes, please bring your laptop to the Makerthon Weekend. Other shared prototyping materials will be provided for you over the Makerthon Weekend (see the resources tab for more details).

    Q: What is the location for the Challenge Announcement & Teammate Hunt, and for the Healthcare Makerthon Weekend?

    The Healthcare Makerthon Weekend is taking place at the Leslie eLab at 16 Washington Place.

    Q: Who can I contact if I have questions?

    If you have questions which haven’t been answered through the FAQ, please contact us at

  • Makerthon Weekend Speakers
    Photo of Jeff Dachis.
    Jeff Dachis

    (Steinhardt '92) One Drop

    Photo of Sabina Braverman
    Sabina Braverman

    (Wagner '18) HealthHuddle

    Photo of Mithru Swarna
    Mithru Swarna

    (Tisch ITP '18) NYU Ability Project

    Photo of Abraham Brody.
    Abraham Brody

    Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing

    Photo of Anne-Laure Fayard
    Anne-Laure Fayard

    Department of Tech Management and Innovation at NYU Tandon

    Photo of Allison Becker
    Allison Becker

    Makerthon Judge, Aging2.0

    Photo of Allan Chochinov
    Allan Chochinov

    Makerthon Judge, SVA

    Photo of Paresh Shah
    Paresh Shah

    Makerthon Judge, NYU Langone Health

  • Healthcare Makerthon Weekend Sponsors & Organizers
  • Makerthon Events Calendar