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Invented at UML

DifferenceMaker Program Helps Bring Student Ideas to Life

Allison Dunbar '17 (Exercise Physiology); eNABLE Lowell team member poses with prosthetic hand
Allison Dunbar '17, eNABLE Lowell team member, poses with a prosthetic hand.

06/12/2018
By David Perry

Launched in May 2012, DifferenceMaker is one of those UMass Lowell programs where everything comes together. Innovation. Cross-disciplinary cooperation. Communication. Engagement. Entrepreneurship.

The idea is to help students understand how they can make a difference in the world and to gather with others – faculty, other campus programs and students from colleges other than their own – to bring their vision to life. 

And if it really works out, a business may emerge from the hard work.

It wouldn’t be the first time.

DifferenceMaker Products & Services to Market

invisaWear, the safe jewelry company, began as a DifferenceMaker project Photo by courtesy photo

invisaWear

The smart jewelry company designed to keep women safe by sending alerts via text to love ones and even police when activated began in 2016 as a DifferenceMaker project but is gaining big-time sparkle as it launches to the rest of the world. Read more
Liam plays basketball

eNABLE Lowell

eNABLE Lowell is an all-volunteer student chapter that designs and fabricates low-cost 3D-printed prosthetic devices for children with physical disabilities. Read more
Laptop pictured with state-of-the-art ECG technology to screen students for undetected cardiac conditions

Mass HeartBeat

Mass HeartBeat is an organization dedicated to bringing affordable and convenient heart screening services to students directly at their school, camp, or university. Read more
Veloxity co-founders Felipe Nascimento and Upkar Singh with their charging kiosk Photo by Tory Germann

Veloxity

Felipe Nascimento '16 and Upkar Singh '16, co-founded startup Veloxity, maker of the cell phone charging kiosk located at University Crossing. Read more
Topacan in action

TopaCan

Industrious and driven to entrepreneurship, 25-year-old mechanical engineering grad Justin Lozier ’17 invented TopaCan, “the most convenient ashtray in the world.” Read more
Operation250 is an online platform consisting of an educational website, engaging videos and a large social media presence, focused on educating both young adolescents, parents and educators on how to prevent radical extremist recruitment.

Operation 250

Op250, which educates students, parents and teachers about the recruitment tactics of violent extremist organizations, was started by Tyler Cote '17 and other interns at the UML's Center for Terrorism and Security Studies. Read more
Nonspec is moving toward the market and winning acclaim

Nonspec Inc.

The co-founders and partners in Nonspec Inc., an emerging business that makes affordable prosthetics, landed a $50,000 prize as one of the Top 26 startups at MassChallenge, the Boston-based business accelerator. Read more
Breezy is a real-time air quality-monitoring device, which can be tracked through its cell phone application or online website.

Breezy

Breezy is a real-time air quality-monitoring device, which can be tracked through its cell phone application or online website. Read more

Meet More DifferenceMakers

  • Clot Catch will eliminate the risks of current filters such as shifting, vessel puncture and strut fracture.

    Clot Catch is developing a new design to replace the current inferior vena cava (IVC) clot filters that are currently on the market.