Engineering students reflect on Science Week with new touchscreen technology
Engineering students Alice Shaughnessy (17) and Jack O’Regan Kenny (18), who recently founded the start-up Mirr, want to encourage extra-curricular STEM activities as part of Science Week 2020.
At Mirr, the pair develop novel smart mirrors with patented touchscreen technology. Users can stream Netflix, listen to Spotify, or check the weather while keeping unused screen space fully reflective.
The founders are evidence of the successes of Science Week and extra-curricular STEM activities. Before developing Mirr, both Shaughnessy and O’Regan Kenny had amassed a series of individual achievements in various STEM activities both at home and abroad.
Shaughnessy, an engineering student at NUI Galway from Oranmore, Galway has won overall technology awards at BT Young Scientist and Scifest. She has also competed at international STEM competitions: ISEF and Hong Kong’s GYSTB. While O’Regan Kenny, a TU Dublin mechatronic engineering student from Mullingar, Westmeath, is involved with coder dojo and has had successes at Scifest and BT Young Scientist.
In 2019, O’Regan Kenny entered Mirr in the Student Enterprise Awards and received the best commercial potential award. The project was revived this summer, when the duo met at Patch, a summer accelerator run out of Dogpatch Labs. Today, Mirr is competing in international remote accelerator Pioneer, where it remains in the top 10 in Europe and top 25 Globally.
Mirr has also been accepted into Enterprise Ireland’s New Frontiers Programme at TU Dublin, where it will receive six months of mentorship and €15,000 to further develop their product.
“We would encourage anyone to get them and their families involved in Science week this week,” said Shaughnessy. “So many of the amazing annual events have found ways to host alternative events online. You never know what you can learn.”