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Best of the Week 2019-2020: Teaching to the Future


Inspired by the ideas that evolved from this month's COVID-19 Hack-a-thon led by St. Ed's students, Sebastian Vanegas '21 and William Perrins '23 created WRKIN, a home workout service to help motivate people to stay active while staying at home. Similar to services like Twitch and Google Hangouts, WRKN is a live video-call service with professional fitness trainers to walk you through workouts and make them more fun. "WRKIN provides a solution for those who aren't motivated to get active or who've lost faith in their ability to stay fit without going to a gym," says Sebastian. "Our focus is helping everyone staying healthy mentally and physically. WRKIN allows users to easily and effectively exercise from home regardless of the tools or equipment you have."

To make the service more interactive, WRKIN workout sessions can be communal, allowing users to invite friends and family to join in and workout together. Another feature that makes the service more accessible is its compatibility with iPhones, Google Chrome and Apple TV. For a monthly fee of $15, WRKIN will set you up with a personal trainer who'll create a personalized fitness plan for you while also creating group workout experiences that you can join in with your friends. "WRKIN will be a universal program for all ages, lifestyles and strengths, but it's been developed for this specific time when everyone is stuck home during the COVID-19 pandemic," says Sebastian. While continuing to work on the development of WRKIN, Sebastian has really enjoyed working with his fellow classmates to come up with innovative ideas to help others during these unprecedented times.

"This pandemic experience has made us realize even more how vital the internet is for businesses - that there are a variety of applications for it that haven't really been looked at yet," says Sebastian. "I'm learning a lot about practical business design and what a product needs to actually be successful. This is the opportune time to innovate new ways to help people as everyone is affected by this pandemic, and will be affected for possibly years to come. If we can start to help out our communities now when we have the ability to, it will make the future much more tolerable for everyone if this were to happen again. Personally, I think that even if our idea doesn't become popular, if it does help people to stay healthy and interacting with their friends and loved ones, then it will be considered a success to me."

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