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Former EMT launches company to improve student first aid

Cord Meyer, a psychology major set to graduate in 2019, founded Rescue Hound, a company that provides first aid kits for college students. Photo by Adam Glanzman/Northeastern University

When Cord Meyer returned to Northeastern from his first co-op as an emergency medical technician, he was stunned by how little his fellow students knew about basic first aid.

His response was to start Rescue Hound, a company that provides first aid kits specifically designed for college students.  

“I wanted to give kids both the knowledge and the tools to treat themselves in situations that require basic first aid,” said Meyer.

A life’s mission

Meyer enrolled at Northeastern as a pre-med student and majored in psychology to explore his lifelong fascination with human motivation. But his experience as an EMT convinced him that what he loved most was providing hands-on help to people in crisis.

His plans for med school changed one evening while he was reading a book about the humanitarian work done by Navy Seals. He was intrigued by their physical prowess and their drive to help others and began doing research on the program.

“Rescue Hound will empower students to help themselves.”

Cord Meyer Northeastern student

Now he plans to take a few months off after graduating in  May, 2019 and then enroll in the Air Force Pararescue program. As part of the Special Operations division, Meyer said he is fascinated by the elite group’s dedication to rescue operations for both civilians and military personnel.

How Rescue Hound works

His first aid kits are completely customizable. This avoids the one-size-fits-all wastefulness of commercially marketed kits, which are typically filled with items you will never use.

The company offers three basic packages for $35: “The Husky” basic, “The Greyhound” for athletes, and “The St. Bernard” for those who want a kit geared more toward treating serious injuries.  

Each of these options is completely customizable, so that students or their parents can add and subtract individual items based on their anticipated needs. Because each item is purchased in individual quantities, the user can order two ibuprofen or 20, one hydration tablet or a dozen.

Photo by Adam Glanzman/Northeastern University

The website will also allow users to order individual items so they can replenish their kits as they use them.

Meyer said the $35 base price is $15 to $25 less than his competitors. By purchasing generic medicines wholesale, he has been able to keep the per-pill price lower than the per-pill price of buying medicine by the bottle in a drug store.  

The kits include a quick fold-out guide on basic first aid as well as a more detailed booklet produced by the American Health and Safety Institute on what to do in case of heart attacks, animal bites, shock, and more. As the company evolves, Meyer plans to produce a series of instructional videos on how to administer the most common emergency procedures to handle burns, sprains, and choking.

“Rescue Hound will empower students to help themselves,” he said.

Meyer credited IDEA, Northeastern’s student-run venture accelerator, with helping him design first aid kits to meet the needs of college students.

IDEA helped us to formulate the right questions of our customers and prepare a better solution to the problem that we’re trying to fix,” he said.

Meyer will continue to work on Rescue Hound on co-op through Northeastern’s Center for Entrepreneurship Education.  He said Dan Gregory, the co-director of the center and his co-op adviser, gave him some good advice.  “At this stage in venture development, the only thing you can’t get back is time,” Gregory told Meyer. “Prioritize and execute.”

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