Jared Collett, an entrepreneurship major at the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business, wants to help students like himself make goals, get things done, and de-stress with the Mura app, a productivity wellness planner.
“Students are at the most pivotal, stressful times of their lives,” Collett said. “All the while, they’re relentlessly bombarded in this information age with contradictory viewpoints, principles, and how-to’s. Our world is saturated with distraction and an overemphasis on entertainment and leisure.”
As Collett began his college career, he noted that his peers struggled to plan, prioritize, and focus on the tasks at hand. As the semesters went on, his concern for the wellbeing and mental health of students, especially seniors in high school and undergraduates at universities, mounted.
Collett decided to find an answer for those struggling. He spent most of his time learning about neuroscience, trying to connect dots between physical, mental, and emotional health. With his nose in the books, he learned one big lesson: it all comes back to productivity.
“There is a psychological link between mental health and productivity, which is often ignored and uncultivated,” he said. “Students, specifically, are not yet fully developed nor matured in the arts and acts of habit making and breaking, creative exploration, and mindfulness. I’m designing an app to effectively support one’s productivity pursuits for a healthier life.”
With the productivity angle narrowed down, Collett still had a lot of work to do. Plenty of websites, stores, and other apps had tried and failed to help faltering students get back on their feet or cross more off their to-do lists. Collett needed to figure out a new way to help struggling students get things done and start feeling better.
Collett ran his ideas through the programs at the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute and Department of Entrepreneurship & Strategy to get a more refined pitch.
“I benefited from feedback revolving around emphatic design thinking practices via Hours with Experts,” he said. “Above all, the entrepreneurship program’s business discovery class was extremely helpful for me in learning pragmatic principles of entrepreneurship all while having time to practice building out an idea.”
Ultimately, he concluded that the multifaceted problem required a multifaceted solution, which he’s delivering in the form of a smart iOS and Android mobile application that can offer live statistics on health, wellness and goal-making and keeping.
Currently in the development stage, Collett’s app is defined by science-based programming and, ultimately, lots and lots of research. He reviewed the different solutions currently on the market, from meditation apps to task, calendar and goal-keeping plugins, and integrated their strengths into his own platform.
From guiding users to develop their personal mission statements to creating nightly routines and dynamic to-do lists, this all-in-one wellness app is personalized down to the coding itself. Some features, like the Contrast Therapy, will take a series of tasks that need to be accomplished and auto-sort by importance and energy expenditure, suggesting what to start on first, and when it’s time to take a break. Mura makes it easier than ever to create and stick to a schedule built around your goals, helping people keep the ‘why’ in what they do.
Now, Collett’s focus is finishing out the interface design, finalizing feedback and getting the first publishable version of Mura in the app store. The future holds even bigger plans for the productivity app, though.
“In the long term, I would like to scale this app in partnerships with universities and high schools nationwide,” he said.
Collett also notes potential for corporations and small businesses to calculate and track productivity and wellness of their team members when he’s able to integrate AI more fully into the platform. For now, he’s just excited to offer help to those who need it most.
“Mura is your buddy or friend,” he said. “It’s fully dedicated to piloting you to the better you.”
For those interested in downloading Mura when it publishes, join the waitlist here.