NUI Galway Student Selected to Pitch at Blackstone LaunchPad Showcase at Forbes 30 Under 30

Edel Browne
Oct 13 2016 Posted: 13:10 IST

Edel Browne, a third year biotechnology student at NUI Galway and founder of Free Feet Medical, has been selected to pitch at the Blackstone LaunchPad Showcase at the Forbes 30 Under 30 Conference. The conference will run from 16-19 October in Boston. Chosen after a competitive process across the Blackstone LaunchPad global network, 19-year-old Edel secured her place in the top six.

Edel’s company Free Feet Medical is developing a device which helps people with Parkinson’s disease overcome gait freezing, a symptom affecting over 70% of those diagnosed with the disease.

As student entrepreneur-in-residence with Blackstone LaunchPad at NUI Galway, Edel from Athenry, Co. Galway, is excited at the opportunities this international exposure will bring. Winning teams will be announced by Jon Gray, Blackstone’s Global Head of Real Estate, and Randall Lane, Editor of Forbes.

This achievement has come on the back of a very productive few months for Free Feet Medical with the launch of a crowdfunding campaign on FundIt that has already raised €9,000 and the announcement that Free Feet was selected as a finalist for Women Mean Business Awards, Best Newcomer. To donate to Free Feet Medical please visit

Blackstone LaunchPad at NUI Galway is well represented at Forbes 30 Under 30 with a second team, Crono Labs, also attending the conference. Crono Labs has developed a revolutionary case to conveniently carry your computer monitor and reduce cable clutter. The venture is run by NUI Galway students Ruairi McNicholas and Oliver Burke, both from Headford, Co. Galway, and is still in the prototype phase.

Executive Director of Blackstone LaunchPad NUI Galway, Mary Carty said: “I am thrilled for Edel. Her hard work and passion is inspiring. It’s a fantastic opportunity to drive her business forward. The exposure and opportunities this event will bring to Free Feet Medical is incredible.

Having two teams, Free Feet Medical and Crono Labs attend Forbes 30 Under 30 is a fantastic achievement for NUI Galway. It’s testament to the creativity and ambition of our students and the supports available to them on campus. Seeing our start-ups recognised on a global stage, bodes very well for the future of the next generation of entrepreneurs in Ireland.”

Since February, Blackstone LaunchPad at NUI Galway has supported over 2,000 students. The ethos is to support and empower each student by creating supports specific to individual needs and personal development; to help them to shape their pathway and celebrate their own unique talents and strengths.


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