Students’ Empathy and Friendship Brought Social Good

This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: New blog articles in Microsoft Community Hub.

Minju Park, honored as a Gold Microsoft Learn Student Ambassador, is pursuing a degree in computer science at a Korean university. Along with her team, named the Guardians, she co-created 'Cheese: Dementia Guardians, a service designed to assist in the care management of dementia patients and provide emotional support to their caregivers. This innovative service earned them the second prize at the 'K-Hackathon', South Korea's largest AI technology competition, which saw participation from over 900 students across the nation and was organized by the Ministry of Science and ICT.


In this blog post, we will introduce the wonderful glory brought about by their efforts.


Minju, who once aspired to be a pianist, shifted her focus to computer science upon entering university. The catalyst for joining the hackathon was her grandfather's unexpected diagnosis of dementia. Witnessing the emotional toll on her family and the diverse challenges posed by the disease, Minju was inspired to create 'Cheese'—a systematic management tool designed to alleviate the stress experienced by caregivers and effectively address the symptoms of dementia. This innovative solution reflects Minju's dedication to blending her technical skills with a deep personal motivation to make a positive impact on the lives of those affected by dementia.


She collaborated with university peers to establish a team, focusing on development and integrating feedback from specialists, such as Korean MVP Juno Bea. Their goal was to accurately gauge symptom severity and refine both functional and technical elements. The team introduced a 'Monthly Nursing Report' feature, which offers statistical insights, enabling a quick overview of dementia patients' symptom patterns as documented in the nursing diary. Through persistent refinement and user-centric testing, they ultimately launched 'Cheese', a comprehensive tool designed to enhance patient care.


The service Cheese: Dementia Guardians


The team named Guardians participated in the K-Hackathon, which was organized around the theme of "freedom, public interest issues, and regional specificity," and emerged as the winners. The judges highlighted that empathy and shared experiences within the community are crucial for those caring for individuals with dementia. While numerous services for dementia patients have been previously offered through smartwatches, the project 'Cheese' stood out for its innovative solutions aimed at supporting the caregivers of dementia patients.

Team Guardians.jpg

Team Guardians at the K-Hackathon Competition


The 8-month journey was an excellent opportunity for growth, bringing Minju a large amount of learning. She says, "It allowed me to think about what value the project could create in the real world and to think more deeply about the business aspect. This experience helps us understand and develop projects from various perspectives beyond our development capabilities. I hope that the valuable experiences gained from cooperation and communication with team members will be a stepping stone for future challenges and growth."


Cheese will continue to evolve based on feedback from users. Congratulations again to Minju and the Guardians team for realizing such a wonderful form of social good that shapes one person's thoughts and supports many people!


For more details about Minju's story, please visit her blog:

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