Being an entrepreneur at NYU in New York City doesn’t just mean having access to collaborative labs and expert mentors. It also means immersing yourself in a bustling global hub of business, technology, and finance. Artin Perse is a senior studying sustainable business and design at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. Artin took advantage of the University’s creative landscape to build and pitch his latest social venture. Peris, Artin’s product, is a tamper-resistant pill bottle designed to fight drug addiction.
From an early age, Artin witnessed the dangers of America’s growing opioid epidemic. His family and friends struggled to cope with addiction to painkillers while across the United States. Roughly 64,000 people died from overdoses in 2016 alone. In response, Artin proposed a bottle that’s programmed to dispense a dosage only at times prescribed by a pharmacist. “It acts as a preventative mechanism from overconsuming medicine, the same way that seat belts reduce the risk of fatalities while driving,” says Artin.
Working with engineers from NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering, Artin began by prototyping the bottle’s design at the new MakerSpace facility while conducting meticulous industry research. Every morning, Artin emailed pharmaceutical executives and leaders at public health organizations—a process that resulted in hundreds of phone calls. “People love to help students who are working on social problems, and in return, you get valuable knowledge on the problem you’re trying to solve,” he says.
At the same time, Artin learned how to build a sustainable business model thanks to resources across NYU. His courses at Gallatin, like the Social Innovation Practicum, taught him methodologies for crafting a start-up that’s both profitable and socially responsible. In addition, he made frequent visits to the Berkley Innovation Labs at NYU’s Stern School of Business. “As student entrepreneurs, we often lack holistic experiences, but the Berkley Labs make up for that,” says Artin. “Any interested student can get help from their pro bono legal team, a product design help desk with hardware designers, and a ‘sounding board’ of experts who offer one-on-one feedback.”
After years of work, Artin’s bottle made its mark. He entered Peris in nine of NYU’s student competitions and won two. Peris also entered the final rounds of several others, like Stern’s $300K Entrepreneurs Challenge. Now he and his team are preparing Peris to enter the market. “Our product is the first of its kind, which means we’re trying to ensure the bottle’s design contains the lowest margin of error for our clients,” Artin says. “But I hope, when all the testing’s done, it can deliver the social value—and the help—they deserve.”
GETTING DOWN TO BUSINESS
- Tap into a vast array of resources and connect with fellow entrepreneurs at the Leslie eLab on NYU’s Washington Square campus.
- Visit the NYU incubators at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering, which nurture the next generation of sustainable ventures.
- Enlist in a mentorship program like #NYUFemaleFounders, which supports women in business and technology.
DID YOU KNOW?
Students at the Stern School of Business can now enroll in a brand-new Entrepreneurship co-concentration, which offers courses designed to help you start your own business, join a start-up, or channel your creativity into an existing organization.