Past Discovery Forums

2012 Discovery Forum

The second annual Discovery Forum was a great success! See below for descriptions and videos from each presentation.
Content table

BaseBald: Curing Childhood Cancers, One Baseball Team at a Time – Chase Jones

As a cancer survivor and collegiate baseball player, I saw the need in two areas in our community: a greater sense of awareness of childhood cancer, and a platform for athletics to give back. BaseBald was born on the idea that athletes, specifically baseball players, of all ages, could shave their heads and help kids battling cancer right here in our own state. In 2012, from NC State to North Wake Youth Baseball, we have shaved heads and given funds to life-saving research in our children’s hospitals in North Carolina.


The next big thing to battle cancer? A bad haircut.


CityShape: A communication tool that connects citizens, city leaders, and open data to shape healthier cities – Hayley Hughes

This summer, I participated in City Camp Raleigh, a 3-day conference that brings residents, programmers/coders/designers, businesses and local government officials together to openly innovate and improve the city through technology. In a small group session, this problem was posed: How can technology be useful to help city planners consider the impact of healthy community design? When the cost of building more car-centric urban sprawl is the health of Raleigh citizens, we need planners and developers to use sense, not dollars, in decision-making. Our proposal is called City Shape, a mobile, location-based tool that opens the lines of communication between city officials and citizens. Engaging citizens in a healthy planning process and making it fun and interactive for them to participate contributes to an sustainable, smarter city.


Creating Food Circles: Widespread Composting & Urban Farming – Justin Senkbeil

Food scraps are not trash! It’s time to stop wasting these valuable resources and get people to rethink their trash, and the important role it plays in growing healthy food. Find out how we’re enabling households to reinvest in their community by giving them a safe, clean, and easy way to turn their food scraps into compost for local gardens (hint: we’re doing it for them!). We want to share how we came about connecting people’s “trash” to the quality of their food, the exciting benefits to the community of what we’re doing now, and how we continue to evolve through lessons learned.


Dreams into Reality: Supporting North Carolina’s Small Businesses – Sadaf Knight

Behind each small business is a story of hope and determination. Especially in the state’s rural, low-wealth communities, these businesses are the back bone of local economies, creating jobs and building wealth for future generations. But too often these entrepreneurs face significant barriers in getting started, as many cannot access capital that they need. The Support Center, a Community Development Financial Institution, has been stepping in to fill this gap, focusing our lending resources in the most underserved communities in the state. Through small business lending and financial education, we work with entrepreneurs to turn their dreams into reality.


Idea Bank to Create Jobs Where There Are None – Dawn Trembath

It’s hard to watch the Truth and Hope Tour of Poverty in NC without feeling you must take action. This Idea Bank is at the heart of a project to help individuals and communities create jobs. We’re interviewing successful fourth sector businesses in rural communities and low-resource urban communities, run by men and women of all ages, with a wide variety of talents, interests and concerns. Their stories are intended to spark ideas for new businesses that can work well in distressed communities. We’ll also direct people to the support needed to turn their ideas into successful businesses.


Improving Emergency Care Through Telemedicine – Allison Coats and Steven Mazur

Through the Engineering Entrepreneurs Program at NC State, our team has founded a telemedical company that will improve emergency care and efficacy for emergency physicians and specialists. We plan to sell small, wireless cameras that emergency physicians can use to analyze patients in ERs immediately after they arrive. These cameras will stream video to third parties anywhere, allowing specialists at home to easily analyze a patient and connecting emergency physicians to experts around the world.


Saltwater Connections: Navigating Community Opportunities – Barbara Garrity Blake

Saltwater Connections is growing community treasures and resources into innovative opportunities for 21 rural communities located on the Outer Banks National Scenic Byway.

These communities are unique, fiercely independent and isolated by saltwater yet share a connective resiliency shaped by the currents of a dynamic environment.

Residents are building collaborative bridges to strengthen the economic, social and environmental well-being of these places without sacrificing the authentic character that is core to community heritage and identity.

Enterprising solutions for enduring communities are rising in a tide of new prospects for this populace.


Swapl – connect. learn. share – Drew Brisley

There are hundreds of thousands of talented, intellectual, and highly motivated people in Raleigh, yet the flow of knowledge and skills between people seems to stop when it isn’t someone we know. From rebuilding a motorcycle, to juggling, to brewing beer, there should be nothing that keeps us from learning from each other. I hope to lift the barrier that exists so that people become more accessible to teach and share the things they know how to do. Through the use of a website and offline initiatives, I plan to create a more connected local community of learners and teachers.


Talk, Don’t Stalk – Brian Foreman

For many parents, social media is a place of mystery or something they fight about with their teenagers. For other parents it is a place to gather evidence that they will use on their teenagers later. Fear is a leading motivator in this problem as opinions are shaped by fear-mongering talking heads. Social Media Parenting exists to educate parents through workshops and publications about Gen Z, social media and the best ways to engage teenagers there, rather then stalk them. Social media can help build offline relationships, even between parents and teens.