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Innovate New Mexico Student Pitch Competition Provides Entrepreneurial Opportunities for Students Statewide

Albuquerque, NM—May 24, 2016.  On April 25th, STC and the UNM innovationAcademy hosted Innovate New Mexico’s first student pitch competition for university students around the state.  The event was held at the Bow & Arrow Brewing Co., one of Albuquerque’s newest brew pubs, which was launched in February by four local, first-time entrepreneurs.

Students from UNM and New Mexico Tech submitted an initial 90-second video pitch for an idea or technology to a panel of entrepreneur judges who selected the top ten finalists to pitch live at Bow & Arrow to an audience of more than 70 business professionals, entrepreneurs, investors, and others in the community.  Audience members voted electronically, using a mobile app developed by Wyrd, a student start-up created by UNM business student Trace Rucarean.  The top five winners split over $7,000 in prize money.  The prize money came from sponsors and donors raised through a crowdfunding effort by STC.

STC CEO Lisa Kuuttila and innovationAcademy Director Dr. Robert DelCampo introduced the students to the crowd.  “It was a really fun evening held in a beautiful but casual and friendly space.  The students did a great job considering that nearly all were first-time pitch competitors.  We want to thank all of the people, organizations and companies who were sponsors and donors for this event, which would not have been possible without their generosity.  A special thank you goes to Bow & Arrow for providing the pub space free of charge for the event.”  (See the list of sponsors and donors below).

The competition winners are the following:

Myissa Weiss
New Mexico Tech
Undergraduate – Mechanical Engineering
A highly-efficient, vertical axis wind turbine for cleaner and greener energy

Antonio Gutierrez and Aundre Huynh
Undergraduates – Anderson School of Management
FormaPop, LLC – a baby bottle attachment that stores formula for on-the-go convenience

Brenda Macias and Edith Castellanos
Undergraduates – Journalism and Mass Communication/Electrical Engineering
BookSpot – a mobile app for UNM students who are interested in buying, selling and renting used textbooks

Alexandra Luna
Undergraduate – Anderson School of Management and Psychology
Cosmos – a virtual reality program for online instruction

Robert Mendez
Undergraduate – Anderson School of Management
Cornivore – uses a different process for making popcorn that is tastier and healthier than competitors because it eliminates corn syrup, soy lecithin and other preservatives

About Innovate New Mexico®
Innovate New Mexico is a statewide network among STC.UNM, New Mexico State University’s Arrowhead Center, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, Sandia National Laboratories, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and the Air Force Research Laboratory to create a “front door” through co-location to the technologies developed among these research partners.  The network brings together the partners’ innovation assets to one source to provide easy access for entrepreneurs, investors, companies, industry partners, and others interested in commercializing new technologies developed in New Mexico.  The program grew out of an initiative developed and spearheaded by STC in 2015 that brought together the research partners and economic development professionals from the Technology Research Collaborative, the Mid-Region Council of Governments and the state’s congressional delegations.  Innovate New Mexico is physical located at STC in the UNM Science & Technology Park but will move to Innovate ABQ® when STC relocates.  Visit the program website at www.innovatenewmexico.com.

Thank you page for donors&sponsors