Week One: Friday

Refection: Day 5 of the REU Research Overview
We did it! We finished the REU Research Overview week! Each day was filled with 8 hours of lectures and workshops and a few hours of homework each night. And although it was tough at times, I can honestly say that I am already learning a lot.

Today we had our first meeting with our mentor. I am excited to working on Kay Connelly’s project. We will be using different survey methods to study the correlation between stress in new mothers and the Microsoft band output. The surveying will be done through two applications. One application will be an Android phone application. This application will be used as a daily diary. The other application will be for the Microsoft band. This application will collect different kinds of input and ask questions throughout the day. Together these applications will collect data that will allow us to study technology’s potential to detect stress. I am excited to start looking at the code on Monday!

We then had our first ProHealth meeting. These meetings will now happen every Friday. Today each of the Professors and grad students talked. They briefly explained what they’ve been working on and what they need to do. I am glad that we get to be apart of these meetings. I think it will be encouraging to be able to share what we have finished each week.

We then worked on our elevator pitches. This was the first time I’ve given an elevator pitch. Also, public speaking is definitely not my strongest skill. So I was a little nervous to present our pitches at the ProHealth tea. I volunteered to go first, so my nerves wouldn’t get the best of me. Surprisingly, I came in second! Here is the elevator speech I gave today:

Hello, my name is Devon Mensching, and I am a senior computer science major at DePauw University. So what if technology had the ability to detect and respond to elevated stress in real time? This summer I will be researching how the Microsoft band to detect stress levels in new mothers with Professor Kay Connelly. I will work on a team to create an Android phone application, as well as a Microsoft band application. These applications will use survey methods to see how stress correlates with the Microsoft band output. Our work will help further the research in wearable technology’s ability to detect emotions in real time.

All in all, today was another good day. It was exciting to finally start learning about the research we will be working on this summer. With that, I am looking forward to starting our reserach next week.