PhD (Engineering), 2012
MASc (Engineering), 2007
Apparently, you can learn a lot about someone’s future by looking at the awards they win.
Yue Chen is the founder and CEO of Shanghai-based HiCling Technology, a consumer health technology start-up. He completed a PhD in Engineering at SFU in 2012.
During his doctoral program, Chen was awarded the NSERC Alexander Graham Bell Canada Doctoral Scholarship. With four US patents to his name and as many start-ups, Chen is well on his way to joining the telecommunication pioneer’s impressive track record of technological innovation.
“I love to create stuff for everyday people and see the immediate impact of my work. They are small steps but I feel like I am changing the world with each project,” he says.
Chen’s current challenge: creating China’s most all-encompassing and integrated health management device. The Cling tracks and analyzes sleep patterns, skin temperature, exercise, and heart rate data. This information is then used to produce behavioral recommendations based on the user’s health goals
“People in Shanghai are so busy, their lives fragmented. They might feel unhealthy but don’t have the time to figure out how to get better. This device is about showing them how and coaching them to lead a healthier life,” he says.
Though the company is barely two years old, Chen has already raised 4.5 million US dollars and successfully released the first generation of devices.
Some of Chen's previous projects include one of the first geographic positioning systems chips for cars (Centrality Communications), a device that enables analog phones to make no-charge calls (Obihai Technology) and a gaming system that aimed to improve gamers' health by requiring players to do a certain amount of exercise before they could access the console (Striiv).
A successful entrepreneur in one of the world's largest and most competitive markets, Chen points to his graduate school experience as helping get him to where he is now.
“After my PhD, I was suddenly able to see things in a deep way, foundational way that I can apply to different fields. Though the projects I am working on might look different, those fundamentals do not change,” he says.
- Written by Jackie Amsden and the Office of Graduate Studies & Postdoctoral Fellows.
Published in 2015