From senior design class to entrepreneurial success
When Riley Csernica and Chelsea Ex-Lubeskie were bioengineering seniors, they were assigned to a senior design group with the orthotics and prosthetics division at Greenville Health System. They worked with research scientist Chuck Thigpen to design a shoulder brace for shoulder dislocations.
At the end of the class, they knew the product concept was good and that there was a market for the product.
That product became the Tarian Pro Shoulder Stabilizer, the first product in the growing line for their company. The custom-fitted functional shoulder brace is designed for individuals with shoulder instability who want to return to athletic activity. It works by providing compressive support to the shoulder rather than strictly limiting abduction of the arm. The brace has earned praise from professional hockey players to college athletic trainers to high school coaches and athletes.
Both women prepared themselves for their venture into business by obtaining graduate degrees from Clemson. Csernica earned a master’s degree in business administration with emphasis in entrepreneurship and innovation. Coupled with her experience as a teacher’s assistant in a SolidWorks engineering class and her proficiency in the program, she has been key in the continued product development. While working on her master’s degree in bioengineering, Ex-Lubeskie worked part-time at the Clemson University Research Foundation where she learned about patents, licenses and contracts. Diplomas in hand, they moved home to Charleston to work on the product and grow the company.
While pursuing ongoing product development, such as a new fully customizable ankle brace that utilizes a heat-moldable material as the structure of the brace, Csernica and Ex-Lubeskie travel to trade shows, meeting collegiate and professional athletic trainers to market their products. They also believe in giving back to Clemson by speaking to classes about their experiences and their plans to keep Tarian Orthotics a growing business — showing how a design class can become an entrepreneur’s dream come true.
To learn more about Csernica and Ex-Lubeskie’s company go to www.tarianorthotics.com.