CP Partners with Manhattan College Students to Innovate Assistive Technology
The 2023 CREATE (Cultivating Resources for Employment with Assistive TEchnology) Symposium offers an opportunity for NYC-area college engineering students to collaborate with rehabilitative support organizations to develop innovations that help people with disabilities succeed in their jobs.
Student teams compete to receive prizes worth up to $15,000, to be split among students, their universities, and their organizational partners. This year, nine teams from five colleges and five New York State Industries for the Disabled (NYSID) member rehabilitation organizations each presented their assistive technology and demonstrated their inventions at the Symposium on April 25.
Guided by Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) faculty members Yi Wang, Ph.D., and Wafa Elmannai, Ph.D., two teams of Manhattan College students are working with CP Unlimited on two projects, as part of the ECE senior capstone design program:
High-Res Headband Document Scanner & Transmitter: Smile Farms employs people with disabilities to mainly help with planting and harvesting plants to help local restaurants receive fresh produce, alongside office work. Randy, who works at Smile Farms and who has limited use of his hands, aspires to work in the paper scanning department and requested the team build a hands-free device to scan documents. The team came up with the idea of creating a High-Res Headband Document Scanner that could transmit the scanned documents to a computer, thereby removing the barrier to employment. The students involved in this project include Andrew Saint-Vil ’22, Adil Khaleque ’22, Gustavo Zarate ’22, Jorge Vasquez ’22 and Saad Hussain ’23.
Smart Register Using Machine Learning & Computer Vision: At CP Unlimited’s Day Habilitation in the Bronx, the local café now has more enhanced tools to help people with disabilities who work the cash register. The team devised a “Smart Register” to scan currency with a camera, recognize the currency, calculate the change the cashier needs to give to the customer, and display it all on an easy-to-see screen. The students involved in this project are Cristian Simoni ’22, Michael Sarpong ’22, Camilo Rodriguez ’22, Brandon Samaroo ’22 and Daniel Samaniego ’22.
Photos are included below of both the formal competition and the informal presentation of the devices at CP Unlimited for our Executive Team: