Connecting Service
and Innovation

Our mission is to provide innovative STEM solutions to American Heroes and their families. Scroll down to find out more.


meet the challengers

Those We Help

Mike Donnelly, US Army

Mike is an Army Veteran who served in Vietnam and was exposed to Agent Orange. This exposure caused him numerous health problems, including legal blindness and mobility issues.

How QL+ helped Mike

Two teams of QL+ student engineers from the University of Cincinnati worked on projects to increase Mike's mobility and independence.

Scooter Rack Lift Device

Mike has a scooter rack that attaches to the back of his vehicle. He didn't use the rack because it was too heavy for him to move. The QL+ student engineers designed and built a device that allows Mike to independently attach and detach the rack from his vehicle. Because of this device, Mike can take his mobility scooter anywhere he wants, thereby increasing his mobility and independence.

Convertible Scooter Cover

Due to Mike's medical conditions, he must be very careful about his exposure to the sun. Another QL+ team of student engineers is designing and building a device that will allow Mike to deploy, with the touch of a button, a convertible-type cover for his scooter. With this device, Mike will be able to enjoy the outdoors with his grandchildren and be protected from the sun. This device will improve his quality of life.

It is an outstanding opportunity for me.  The students are very knowledgeable about the engineering of the device they are making for me.  Also, getting to know a couple of them from visits to my house has been enjoyable.  I know that the device they are making for me will be exactly what I need.

- Mike Donnelly,
US Army Veteran | QL+ Challenger

Rosemary Salak, US Army

Rosemary was the first woman commissioned through ROTC at her alma mater. This began a journey of many firsts for women in the military. She served for 23 years in the Army. After she retired, she was hit by a car and had to have her leg amputated above her knee to save her life.

How QL+ helped Rosemary

A team of student engineers from Ohio University and a team of student engineers from The George Washington University worked on projects that enhanced her ability to engage in her favorite activities, enjoying the beach and riding a handcycle. For Rosemary, these projects increase her mobility and independence.

Surf Transfer Device

Rosemary has a waterproof prosthetic leg that can be used in sand and water. It is not very functional for romping in the surf and for casual swimming, so she prefers to not use it. When she goes to the beach, she relies on friends to physically support her as she enters and exits the surf, hopping on one leg. QL+ student engineers from Ohio University designed and built a device that will provide a way for her to independently, safely, and comfortably get into and out of the surf.

Handcycle Leg Carrier

Rosemary enjoys cycling across the country on a handcycle. When cycling, she removes her prosthetic leg because it gets in the way of the front wheel when turning. On short bike rides, being without the prosthetic leg has been inconvenient but has not caused significant problems. It is more of an issue on longer rides. She needed a way to conveniently and safely carry her prosthetic leg on her handcycle. QL+ student engineers from The George Washington University designed and built a storage system that is easily implemented with no help from others. It secures and protect her prosthetic leg in a manner that does not pose any interference with the safe operation of the handcycle.

I love {working with QL+}! The students are bright, curious, enthusiastic, and committed to using their talents to make the world a better place. They are truly inspiring.

- Rosemary Salak,
US Army Veteran | QL+ Challenger

quality of life plus

What is QL+?

Taylor Morris

QL+ connects America’s brightest STEM students at leading universities nationwide with our Nation’s bravest heroes to create life-transforming technology.

The QL+ Program is unmatched in its impact:

  • Giving injured and ill veterans, first responders, and families greater mobility, independence and access to activities that support their physical and mental well-being.
  • Developing a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workforce.
  • Fostering respect and appreciation for those who serve and protect America.

Through the delivery of usable devices to each of our Challengers, the QL+ Program directly empowers our nation’s patriots to be more independent and enjoy life while also providing our student teams with the unparalleled opportunity to experience the gift of working with American heroes and creating innovative solutions. For QL+ students, the combination of patriotism and the desire to make a difference in a person’s life is powerful and offers lasting effects.

Meet our

University Partners

University of Dayton
Norwich University
University of Colorado Boulder
University of Cincinnati
Cal Poly School of Engineering
Colorado School of Mines
The Catholic University of America
George Mason University
George Washington University
US Naval Academy
Ohio University
Rowan University
San Diego State University
University of South Florida
The University of Texas at San Antonio
VCU College of Engineering
Virginia Tech University
Xavier University

Meet a few of the

Student Innovators

Mary Dickman

university of cincinnati

Mary Dickman

Mary Dickman is an engineering student at the University of Cincinnati, scheduled to graduate in May 2020. She is in UC’s ACCEND program, which allows students to obtain their undergraduate and graduate degrees simultaneously over five years. Mary and her teammates are working on the Convertible Scooter Cover Challenge for our Challenger, a Vietnam veteran. Quote from Mary:

Quote from Mary:

I am enjoying my experience working with QL+. I find it rewarding to do something that can have a positive impact on someone’s life. While parts of the design and manufacturing of our final product are challenging at times, QL+ gives me the chance to improve and apply the skills that I am learning in my studies to design and build a product that benefits my team’s Challenger.

Karen Rius

The George Washington University

Karen Rius

Karen and her teammates worked on the Handcycle Leg Carrier Challenge for an Army Veteran who has a prosthetic leg. Our Challenger, Rosemary, loves to handcycle. The team's goal was to be able to create a carrier that is lightweight and easily attachable to the handcycle for easy use. This device will allow Rosemary to bring her prosthetic leg with her on long trips. Quote from Joseph:

Quote from Karen:

Working with QL+ gave me my first experience in human-centered design. Working directly with Rosemary allowed us to create a close client relationship to create a device that fits all her needs and specifications.


Support QL+

Our mission can only work with the support of the community and those who want to make a difference in the lives of our heroes. Visit the link below and support our cause.