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Five Researchers Selected for Science Center’s Founders Fellowship

PHILADELPHIA, PA – (June 3, 2024) – The Science Center has selected five academic researchers for the 2024-25 cohort of its Founders Fellowship. The 12-month Fellowship provides hands-on startup experience for emerging life sciences entrepreneurs interested in transforming ideas into business reality.

With a grant from the National Institute on Aging (NIA) Research and Entrepreneurial Development Immersion (REDI) program, the Science Center is supporting researchers addressing issues related to aging and/or Alzheimer’s disease for this latest cohort.

The 2024-2025 Founders Fellows include:

Jun Beom Pyo, PhD

Jun Beom is developing a sensor platform technology that accurately and continuously measures blood oxygen levels regardless of skin pigment content or body movement. One promising use case is in helping older adults with COPD to better manage their conditions at home. Jun Beom received his PhD from the University of Pennsylvania and worked at Apple.

Chinaemerem “Chinae” Daniel

Chinae is working on a comprehensive platform that combats financial scams targeting the elderly – a problem that accounts for $28 billion in losses annually. Her digital platform will give older adults greater financial security. Chinae is currently completing a Master's in Business Analytics at Drexel University.

Cole Hagen

Cole is using technology to analyze older adult movements, then use that information to assist with virtual healthcare and mobility-based interventions. Cole is currently a PhD candidate in Neuromotor Science at Temple University.

J.M. Kim

J.M. is developing a mobile augmented reality experience to help aging adults stay physically, mentally, and socially active. She has years of experience creating community-centered solutions using cutting-edge research, including for the largest healthcare system in the country and multiple federal agencies.

Afsaneh Razi, PhD

Afsaneh is developing an AI-driven epilepsy monitoring app targeted at self-care functionality for older adults. Afsaneh is currently an Assistant Professor in Information Science at Drexel and has a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Central Florida. Her research expertise is positioned at the intersection of Human-computer Interaction (HCI) and Artificial Intelligence (AI). She is passionate about investigating the sociotechnical complexities to design and develop technologies facilitating safer and supportive online interactions.

"The Founders Fellowship is designed to equip first-time entrepreneurs with the essentials to transform their ideas into a business reality by removing some of the barriers in the life sciences industry. That holds particularly true for underrepresented groups who may not have had access to the same capital and connections as their peers,” says Science Center President & CEO Tiffany Wilson. “We’re excited to welcome this newest cohort and provide them with the support and connections needed to bring life changing technologies to the aging population.”

The Fellowship experience will include six months of experiential learning led by the Science Center and its network of subject matter experts across Greater Philadelphia’s aging and healthcare industries. The second six months of the Fellowship will focus on technology translation supported by medical faculty and aging-focused advisors. The Fellows will learn about market pain points, determine pricing, address regulatory requirements, and establish intellectual property protections – crucial steps for bringing innovations to market effectively.

The Fellows will also each receive a $50,000 stipend and access to lab space at CIC Labs + Innovation Campus, a sponsor of the program.

This is the third cohort of the Founders Fellowship, which was launched in 2022 and has supported seven researchers.

About the Science Center

The Science Center is Philadelphia’s premier catalyst of entrepreneurial activity, healthcare innovation, and economic growth. Established in 1963, the nonprofit has been recognized by The Brookings Institution as a best-in-class investor, mentor, and economic development partner for young technology companies. Working alongside industry partners and leading research and academic institutions across the globe, the Science Center has supported hundreds of early-stage companies that have a combined $7.8B annual economic impact on Greater Philadelphia. Today, the organization advances healthcare innovation from idea to the marketplace through startup support services and building inclusive STEM pathways for Philadelphia youth and adults. For more information, visit or follow us @UCScienceCenter.

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Kristen Fitch

Senior Director, Marketing