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One really awesome class that I’m taking this semester is a mobile design class called NextLab. It’s similar to D-Lab in trying to solve problems for the developing world, except D-Lab focuses more on looking for simple, low-tech ways to make an impact. Our class, on the other hand, is part of the Next Billion initiative. We’re trying to develop sustainable mobile applications for the next billion mobile users on earth, which makes a lot of sense when you see that cell phones are the most prevalent and fastest spreading technology in the developing world.

After getting an iPhone, I’m also personally sold on how useful some of these simple mobile applications can be.

Being in a grad-level class also means that everyone on my team is extremely accomplished and comes from totally diverse backgrounds, and they’ve all had some pretty enviable life experiences. I’m working with 2 grad students from the Media Lab, a Sloan MBA student, and another undergrad doing the BE / Management double major. We also have film students from Emerson documenting our every move, because part of the class’s goal is to produce videos of our project design and implementation process to share with the world.

My team’s project is trying to improve the process of cervical cancer diagnosis in certain  Zambia clinics. There’s so much that can be said about this, so more about project specifics in another post!

If you’re interested, the awesome video episodes that our filmmakers are producing (as well as our team updates) can be found on our project blog.

This is the kind of stuff that I imagined people would do at MIT when I decided to come here, so I’m really excited to be finally doing it 🙂