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    ASPIRE is a grant program for undergraduate researchers working with Clark School faculty on projects with commercial potential

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    2012 University of Maryland $75K Business Plan Competition Winners Announced

    2012 University of Maryland $75K Business Plan Competition Winners Announced


    The Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech) today announces the winners of the 2012 University of Maryland $75K Business Plan Competition.

    Winning student, faculty and recent alumni teams were selected from 91 initial entries and nine finalists, who gave investor presentations on April 20 to teams of expert judges before a public audience of students, faculty, alumni, and others from the regional startup venture community at the University of Maryland.

    Winners, by category, include:


    Graduate Student, Faculty and Researchers Category

    • $10,000: zeroK Nanotech is developing ion source technologies that enable precise machining, analysis, and imaging of materials on nanometer-length scales.

      Team: Brenton Knuffman, post-doctoral researcher, Maryland NanoCenter; Adam V. Steele, post-doctoral researcher, Maryland NanoCenter

    • $7,500: RedOx is developing power generation technologies for a variety of applications.

      Team: Eric Wachsman, director, University of Maryland Energy Research Center, professor, materials science and engineering, chemical engineering; Bryan Blackburn

    • $2,500: Diagnostic anSERS is developing a system for detecting contaminants such as pesticides, explosives, and toxins in food products, ground water and other liquids.

      Team: Sean Virgile, Ph.D. student, Fischell Department of Bioengineering; Eric Hoppmann, Ph.D. student, Fischell Department of Bioengineering

    Recent Alumni Category

    • $5,000: Discreet Secrete Solutions is developing an effective, hands-free, concealable, and quiet breast pump that allows women to discreetly pump in the presence of others.

      Team: Susan Thompson, alumna, mechanical engineering (2006); Andrew Thompson, alumnus, mechanical engineering (2006); Kathleen McDowell; Angela Jillson

    • $5,000: Sonify Biosciences LLC is developing a novel melanoma treatment based on non-chemical, non-ablative ultrasound technology.

      Team: Miriam S. Boer, alumna, biochemistry (2011)

    Undergraduate Student Category

    • $15,000: Archon Medical Technologies LLC is developing suturing devices for gastrointestinal surgery that improve surgeon performance and patient outcomes.

      Team: Bryan Huang, business information systems; Hien Nguyen; Sohail Zahid; Daniel Peng; Stephen Van Kooten; Leslie Myint; Ang Andy Tu; Anvesh Annadanam; Luis Herrera; Haley Huang; Adam Clark

    Warren Citrin Social Impact Award

    • (to be determined) RedOx

    • $10,000: Discreet Secrete Solutions

    Maryland Biotechnology Center Award

    • $10,000: Sonify Biosciences LLC 

    Sponsors of the competition included: Fish & Richardson P.C., Lockheed Martin, the Maryland Biotechnology Center, Nixon Peabody LLP, Warren Citrin and JESS3.

    Competition judges included: Henry Ahn, program manager, Technology Funding Programs, TEDCO; Zvi Band, founder/CEO,Contactually and co-founder, DC Tech MeetupProudlyMadeinDC; Bill Bellows, partner at One White Pixel and adjunct professor, University of Maryland; Melissa Carrier, executive director, Center for Social Value Creation; Frank Dickson, principal, Maryland Venture Fund; Sam Feigin, partner and deputy chair, Business and Finance Department, Nixon Peabody LLP; Brent Goldfarb, associate professor, Management & Entrepreneurship, Robert H. Smith School of Business; Joe Hernandez, chairman, Prolias Technologies; Scott Laughlin, director, LM&O Advertising; Satish Tamboli, owner, US-Asia Ventures; Onur Unal, manager, Maryland Biotechnology Center; and Brandon White, entrepreneur, former venture capitalist and CEO.

    The 12th annual University of Maryland $75K Business Plan Competition promotes the commercialization of innovative ideas and university-created technologies by offering faculty and students prizes for the best new venture plans. The competition emphasizes learning through coaching and the experience of presenting ideas to an expert panel of judges.

    Previous winners include five multi-million dollar ventures, two of which have made the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing companies.

    The UMD $75K Business Plan Competition was founded and is managed by the Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute (Mtech).

    For photos from the competition, visit: www.bpc.umd.edu.

    April 23, 2012


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