Trinity’s PERK Program Testing Alum’s App

Students and professors in Trinity’s Physical Education, Recreation, and Kinesiology (PERK) Department are working with Trinity alumnus Ryan Hesslau ‘18 to be the first college to pilot an app his company recently developed, The Waves App.

Above the Waves is a student management technology company that is “helping guidance counselors better manage their students.”

The Waves App is a student management tool that allows guidance counselors to message students, schedule sessions, and make referrals – all from one central location. Although the platform was built for a high school setting, PERK agreed to partner with Hesslau to test run the platform in a college environment.

With the approval of the Institutional Review Board, students in all PE classes have been given access to the app and have been asked to provide feedback. PERK department professors have encouraged students to ask questions about health, wellness, and physical activity. This might include questions about things like nutrition, proper weightlifting technique, or stress management.

Department Chair Dr. Shari Jurgens, who is one of the PERK Department professors working with Hesslau and Above the Waves, says, “Trinity alums are doing some really cool things with technology, and The Waves App is a great example. We are currently using this app in the PE Department as a test run and we are really hopeful that this will be expanded across the campus in the future.”

The vision for The Waves App on a college campus is to become a helpful plug-in tool for faculty advisers that allows them to message students, schedule sessions, and plenty more.

In addition to being the founder and CEO of Above the Waves, Hesslau is also the Founder and Executive Director of ForeverU, a not-for-profit youth development organization that offers personal development programs to 7-12 grade students that empower them to overcome adversity. He also serves Trinity as a Startup Coach in Fusion59, Trinity’s on-campus innovation hub.

–Paige Rogers ’21, Health Communication Major