Alumna Creates Assistive Technology with MITRE

Rebecca Patterson '18


Lindsay Kaye ‘11 works for MITRE, a not-for-profit organization that operates research and development centers sponsored by the federal government.  MITRE’s mission is “One public interest company, working with industry and academia to advance and apply science, technology, systems engineering, and strategy, enabling government and the private sector to make better decisions and implement solutions to complex challenges of national and global significance.”

We were recently able to talk with Lindsay about her work at MITRE, and the success of her project both internally at MITRE and externally.  In talking about this work Lindsay said “I know MITRE isn't the place one thinks of when ‘entrepreneurship’ is mentioned, but I've had the opportunity to create my own research projects within the company in healthcare and it's been recognized at the highest level.  If students are looking for the chance to exercise corporate entrepreneurship capabilities or work on super cool technologies, they should give MITRE a look!”

The project that Lindsay mentions above is a “free tablet application that provides ‘assistive technology,’ helping traumatic brain injury patients improve prospective memory, reversing a lingering symptom: Remembering to remember.”  It is MITRE’s first app in the Apple App Store and was recently featured on the front page of MITRE’s website (that’s Lindsay in the photo!).

Essentially, the app breaks down tasks into smaller steps and prompts the user to complete the task by using identifiers that were chosen by the user and their therapist or caregiver.  A background system records user actions and displays the information to a dashboard that is shared between the patient and a physician where progress is tracked.  The information on the dashboard can then be used to help the patient and clinician to modify care plans and goals.

In addition, Lindsay attended Babson for her MBA  from 2013-15 while continuing to work at MITRE.  We asked her why she decided to attend, and what it has done for her:

“I decided to pursue an MBA at Babson because much of what I do is entrepreneurial - as a participant in MITRE's prestigious internal research program, a significant portion of my job is to understand what customers' needs are in the upcoming years, formulate a research plan and implement that plan.  I had a great technical education from Olin in which I learned how to tackle the unknown, and supplementing that with on-the-job project leadership experience and an MBA has been greatly helpful.  I chose not to pursue an MS in engineering or computer science because most of what I work on isn't something that is generally learned in a traditional master's curriculum.  My MBA really helped me learn to tell an effective story as part of my work, weaving in the technical with the contextual, to help customers better understand how my work could further their missions.  I learned that the reality is that you could be the best engineer in the world, but without the ability to tell a compelling story about how your work can improve life for the customer, you will fall short.”

Posted in: Alumni Speak