Metamorphosis!

Taylor Herpolsheimer

From a young age, I was drawn to creativity, yet I was often told that a career in the arts wasn't a realistic option. After graduating from high school, I felt directionless, pressured to choose a college major without any true passion guiding me. I decided against pursuing higher education unless I found a subject I was passionate about. Instead, I took a well-paying clerical job with good benefits. Despite the benefits, this role left me deeply unhappy and unfulfilled, making it clear that I couldn't settle for a job like that as my lifelong career. My brother suggested that I explore graphic design, a field I quickly realized I would love. Embracing the risk, I chose to save money while earning my AA at CSN, then quit my job and transfer to UNLV to study graphic design. Looking back, I am so glad I made that decision despite others' doubts. During my time at UNLV, I’ve met so many amazing people, and it has been wonderful to be part of such a vibrant community of creatives on a similar path.

PMDD Pal

PMDD Pal addresses the challenges associated with obtaining a PMDD diagnosis and managing symptoms by providing symptom tracking, education, and community support.

PMDD Pal is a mobile app specifically designed for individuals with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD), a hormonal disorder characterized by psychological and physical symptoms linked to hormonal fluctuations throughout the menstrual cycle severe enough to significantly impact daily functioning and quality of life. Symptoms usually appear 10 - 14 days before menstruation and resolve with the onset of menstruation. Obtaining a diagnosis of PMDD is challenging, as there are no medical tests for PMDD. To receive a diagnosis, symptoms must be tracked daily for at least two menstrual cycles with five or more symptoms appearing and dissipating cyclically relating to the timing of menstruation.

Designed to empower users through education, self-awareness, and community support, PMDD Pal provides a set of tools to help users obtain a diagnosis, understand, and manage PMDD. The app includes a symptom tracker for logging daily symptoms and identifying patterns, alongside a cycle tracker that predicts upcoming menstrual cycles to prepare for hormone fluctuations. Beyond tracking, PMDD Pal provides educational lessons on topics from dietary recommendations to coping mechanisms, equipping users with the knowledge to proactively manage their condition. Its social interaction functionality allows for users to connect, share experiences, and offer mutual support, reducing feelings of isolation. PMDD Pal serves not just as an app, but as a companion, supporting users through the challenges of PMDD with essential tools and access to a supportive community.

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