HHP startup weekend


Startup Weekend

My role
UX/UI Designer

Team members
Nhung Le, Tien Dao, Anu Suresh, Mary Liu,
Ajay Jha, Shubham Somani

October 5 - October 7, 2018

Sketch, Invision

My team designed a mobile app that helps increase high school graduation rates for teenage mothers. Our team included a business analyst, two software developers, and four UX designers, including me.

AI chatbot to provide resources and answers for pregnant teenagers
Provide peer-to-peer support groups with discussion forums, meetups, and member chat
Ability to schedule appointments with a volunteer for help with homework or daily tasks


What is Startup Weekend Education Seattle 2018?

Startup Weekend EDU (SWEDU) brings together people of all skill-sets and experience levels to collaboratively launch tools, schools, services, and learning spaces that re-imagine the future of school and education more broadly. In just 54 hours, teams experience the highs, lows, fun, and pressure that make up life at a startup. As they learn how to create a real company, they'll will meet the very best mentors, investors, co-founders, and sponsors who are ready to help them get started.

Startup weekend


After meeting with the team, I had a clear mission and vision of how our team would tackle this project. My goal for this case study was to discover and identify a way to simplify the distribution process that puts users first. My approach to the challenge is using the design thinking process combined with User Design Canvas methodology.

Design thinking model


User Design Canvas


A non-profit that helps teen mom to go back to school after pregnacy.


  • Teen mom who needs help to go back to school
  • Volunteers who help teen moms


  • Experience emotional states after pregnancy
  • Can't share it with other people including friends and family
  • Can't organize the personal schedule for education


  • Connect with other teen moms who go through the same situation
  • Get help from the volunteer team
  • Get resources of how to overcome the post-pregnancy period


  • Connect with other teen moms who go through the same situation
  • Get help from the volunteer team
  • Get resources of how to overcome the post-pregnancy period


  • Support groups in different periods of pregnancy
  • Volunteers who help with daily tasks
  • Online support with concern and advice


Competitive Analysis

In the first stage of our Startup Weekend project, I performed the competitive analysis to identify the strengths and weaknesses of some existing apps and websites of our competitors in the market. These competitor will focused on the problem regarding the teen’s health issues.


The competitive analysis lead me to infer that the following things are missing in the market:

  • There isn’t a one-stop-shop where teens can go to address their health problems (mental or otherwise). One place to track mental health, meditation, and talk to councilors and peers. There is also no anonymized peer connection platform for teens to talk about their problems.
  • There is a lack of interactive content for teens regarding dealing with stress, anxiety, and sex-ed.

Market Research

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, less than half of all teen moms finish high school, and the number plummets to 2% for the number that go on to graduate from college. The topic of sexual education and pregnancy was also almost universally taboo amongst all students we interviewed. The majority wished there were more classes and counselors at school to deal with pregnancy or stress in general.

Let’s consider our research:

  • In a study of 25 persistently low achieving school districts in the US with a high school graduation rate hovering around 50%, the teen moms accounted for an alarmingly large proportion of the dropouts.
  • In a study by Dr. Muzik in Health Expect, black and minority teenagers want services, including prenatal and postpartum physical and mental health support more than financial assistance or other forms of support.
  • The CDC data shows teen pregnancy affects ethnic groups disproportionately more.

User Research

User Interview

My primary method of research for the app was user interviews. I conducted in-person interviews with 5 participants including 3 high school students and 2 high school educators. Each session lasted about 30 minutes. Before the interviews, I created a script to guide the interaction. During the interviews, I would record the participants with their permission. The goal of user interviews is to reveal some important areas such as health resources at school, the student's physcial and mental health, and the student's attitude towards concern for help.


My team and I created the affinity mapping based on user research in order to analyze what challenges the high-schooler students might face in education


I gathered some insights based on the user research:

  • On sex education resources at school, surprisingly, many of the interviews mentioned dropout rates of highschool teen moms.
  • Apps are important because 5 out of 5 particpants mentioned they use their phones everyday.
  • When being asked, they all mentioned that teenagers prefer talking to peers over sensitive issues.
  • We found a massive amount of resources about sexual education, but lacking in postpartum resources for teen moms.

Team Discussion

My team discussed the user interview results, and we decided to change our direction and craft our problem statement based on user research reports and market research. Instead of focusing on the sexual education resources, we now focus on supporting the teenage mom with a community based app.


Problem Statement

Teen moms need a ramp back to school after pregnancy. Our venture solves this with a community based app. As a result, the high school dropout rate will reduce.


User Profile

Persona #3

In order to show sympathy with our target population, my team discussed creating a fictional character with detailed background, descriptions, and behavior. They included facts and information we observed during research. I used the persona to guide design decisions on important features of my app based on her characteristics.

Anna who is 16 years old and dropped out from high school because she got pregnant. She wants to go back to school but she can’t because of family issues. She needs some support, such as resources or a peer-to-peer group to help her with education and other challenges in daily activities.


Low fidelity Sketch

In the next stage, I worked on creating low fidelity sketches with other UX designers. The purpose of my low-fidelity prototype is that it allows me to include all the core features of the app.



Onboarding 1

AI chat bot to answer questions, concerns, and providing resources for teenage moms like Anna.

Onboarding 2

The app will connect Anna with volunteers who can help her with homework and daily tasks. This can provide emotional support for Anna to release some stress during pregnancy.

Onboarding 3

We create the peer-to-peer support group for Anna. These groups are hosted in person to provide a physical safe spaces and divided into different prenancy period from first trimester to third trimester. Anna can come and share her struggles and feelings with other teenage girls who are going through the same things as her.



My team won the Education Impact Award at 2018 Startup Weekend, organized by Techstars sponsored by Grow with Google.



Future Plans

1. I will keep designing high fidelity screens to make the app feature-complete.
2. I will do more user research on the issues, and perform usability testing on teenage moms to improve the app.

Lessons Learned

1. People in technology come from different backgrounds such as business, software, and management, so it’s always a good idea to explain my knowlege about UX in order to advocate for my users.
2. The Startup Weekend is very unique because it was a mini workshop to execute a whole project from scratch. That was extremely useful for the challenge involved: using technology to improve education in teenage pregnancy by providing young girls with ways to connect with one another.
3. I walked away with a great project and formed close relationships with other people.

Selected Works

Microsoft TeamsProduct Design, Desktop and mobile application

Human Health ProjectUX/UI Design, Branding, Web

Word of lifeUX/UI Design, Mobile App, iOS

Pacifier in the BackpackUX/UI Design, iOS

Perfect PropertiesVisual Design, Web, Mobile App, Tablet

SeedshareUX Design, iOS

© NHUNG LE 2019. All rights reserved.