Math Major Creates Mobile App About CUA
Mike McCarthy, a senior mathematics major and running back for Catholic University’s football team, came up with the idea of creating a mobile application about CUA while writing a research paper. The paper was on the growing demand for and importance of mobility for students and teachers to stay connected in and out of the classroom.
The paper was written for a class McCarthy was taking with Hanney Shaban, a lecturer in the electrical engineering and computer sciences department. Shaban enjoyed McCarthy’s paper so much that he agreed to help him make it a reality.
With no funding, McCarthy began creating CUAmobile. McCarthy and Shaban met three times a week to review the student’s progress. The app was released on the Android Market in August 2011. CUAmobile, which is not an official University app, is free to download by all Android device owners.
McCarthy is thankful for Shaban’s help and says he never would have been able to do it without him.
“He has been like a family member to me throughout the entire process. He has helped me with everything from setting up meetings, shaping ideas, and even friendly advice,” said McCarthy.
CUAmobile allows students and faculty members to access personal information, such as their Blackboard and Cardinal Station accounts, on their Android devices. It also has a news feed feature for Catholic University’s student newspaper, The Tower, and enables the CUA community to access the school directory, cafeteria menu, and emergency contact numbers.
With its campus maps feature, CUAmobile can also be helpful to a person visiting the University for the first time or to students trying to learn their way around campus. The maps feature allows a user to locate a particular building, and then find the easiest way to get to his destination by showing him a map of his surroundings.
CUAmobile has had over 400 downloads so far. Currently, McCarthy and Shaban are not profiting from CUAmobile.
“We both share a passion for ‘eLearning’ mobile applications and educational technologies to enhance the learning experience in and out of the classroom,” McCarthy said.
The next update of CUAmobile will be released sometime this month, according to McCarthy. He says this update will be the “biggest and best yet.” McCarthy and Shaban are also in the process of making CUAmobile available to iPhone users.
“I enjoy making apps but I have no plans right now to make anymore,” McCarthy said. “However, technology is always an area that I remain interested in. I spent a summer interning in private equity, and it was a great experience and I could see myself working in finance after I graduate,” said McCarthy.
To learn more about CUAmobile or to download it to a phone, visit https://market.android.com/details?id=appinventor.ai_McCar211.CUAmobile.