Lviv Students Compete to Create Startups

25 Aug, 2022

Lviv is one of the country’s leading tech hubs. Therefore, it is not surprising that the future tech professionals start early here starting with the first-year students. More than 30,000 tech professionals work in the city, and 563 tech companies are based here. In six years, together with the Lviv IT Cluster, they managed to modernize 18 Bachelor’s programs at four universities in the city of Lviv: Ivan Franko National University of Lviv, Lviv Polytechnic National University, Lviv State University of Life Safety and Lviv National Academy of Arts. Today, over 4,000 students are enrolled in modernized educational programs.

What makes studying in these 18 programs different is that these programs are tailored to meet the industry’s needs. Starting with the first year, under the guidance of mentors from IT companies, students create projects that have every chance to shake up the tech world in the same way that Grammarly, Gitlab, or Petcube once did. Next, we will discuss several projects students created during the last academic year.

‘St. Nicolas Helper’ drone

In 2019, the American company Wing was the first to receive permission for commercial delivery of goods by drones. Five first-year students of the Internet of Things program at Lviv Polytechnic National University believe this is also possible in Ukraine. In just two semesters, they built a drone and developed computer vision technology for it. The drone combined with intelligent software can automatically detect a landing pad and can cover a distance of 10 kilometers.

“Our drone recognizes the exact landing spot with a camera using a special mark on the terrain. We explored the same developments from Betterfly, Dronex, Zipline, Wing. And most of them are delivered from the seller to the post office. We offer immediate delivery to the client,” says Olya Rybenchuk, a first-year student and the project’s Team Lead.

for-fb2022-08-25-2 With their development, the students traveled to Norway for the TAC Challenge 2022 an underwater and aerial drone competition for university students worldwide. Unfortunately, due to the war, the developers were unable to bring their drone to Norway, but the organizers provided them with parts of three different drones:

“From these spare parts, we assembled a new drone in two days and adapted the software: since a remote control controls our drone, we created a code that would autonomously control the drone. Everything worked out for us. The organizers of the competition were very impressed with us because we also were the youngest participants,” adds Olya Rybenchuk.

In the next academic year, the students plan to adapt the drone to be helpful in times of war and, for example, for delivering essential goods.

Vulnerability detection dashboard

First-year students studying cyber security at the Lviv State University of Life Safety have created a vulnerability management program that analyzes and identifies cyber security risks. Therefore, while not all enterprises have specialists who work specifically on identifying and monitoring vulnerabilities, this development can dramatically improve the protection of networks and users’ computers.

“The analytics needs to be comprehensive, dynamic, and high-quality, allowing the organization to scan vulnerabilities and threats. Rarely have I seen this process implemented qualitatively by any company. This dashboard can become a solution for many companies. It can be suitable for DevOp to identify security vulnerabilities. Most of the time, they detect them but do not solve them as they do not have such an opportunity,” says Mykhailo Kropyva, InfoSec Director of SoftServe, a teacher of the Cybersecurity program at the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv.

The dashboard is a kind of integrator of SPLUNK software and Tenable. It analyzes all vulnerabilities, shows a table with the number of threats, defines the most critical ones, and offers ways to solve them. Additionally, the program ranks vulnerabilities as low, medium, high, and critical.

An app for volunteering

Five second-grade students of the Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics of the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv created the COV (Country of volunteers) application. This app allows potential volunteers to find the perfect place to volunteer. And for companies and organizations looking for a volunteer, select the best candidate.

“How are volunteers currently being sought, for example, in Lviv? Volunteers fill out questionnaires, and organizers review them but still have very little information about the previous experience of potential volunteers. A feature of our application is wide functionality. In particular, the volunteer and the organization can give each other rating points. This distinguishes COV from other volunteer platforms,” says Zosia Dovhanych, second-grade student and development team lead.

for-fb2022-08-25-1The application’s creators volunteered but noticed that this is not a very common practice among Ukrainian students. So they surveyed 400 students and found that 67% don’t volunteer because they don’t know where and how to look for opportunities. Therefore, the COV team hopes their development will increase the culture of volunteering and offer a quality solution for companies and organizations.

By following the link, you can find out more about IT specialities at Lviv universities and the prospects opened up by updated educational programs from the Lviv IT Cluster.