The 2021 Ansary Entrepreneurship Competition

Over the past few days I again was reviewing start-up pitches in my role as one of the judges of 2021 Ansary Entrepreneurship Competition at Stevens Institute of Technology. Each year undergraduate students turn their undergraduate engineering and business Senior Design Projects into business plans, and prepare elevator pitches to compete for prizes that total $17,500.

Similar to last year I have been spending my evenings reading executive summaries and listening to the (video recorded) pitches while providing feedback and asking questions about their business ideas and product approaches. Start-up work has always been a component of my projects and roles, and I always feel inspired when hearing innovation as interpreted by undergraduates; it brings a new dimension to the way I think about how things work.

The diversity of the ideas pitched was truly impressive. It included energy solutions, innovative medical devices and processes, combat safety tools, and gardening innovations. The first place team, HipTip, developed a tool that improves hip replacement surgery with new scanning and algorithm innovations. The second place team, TuLip, created a new breastfeeding trainer that provides significant improvements for new mothers. And, the third place team, Livelog, developed improved diagnostics for assessing concussions in athletes.

There could only be three winners, but all of the students should be celebrated. To all of them, I offer my congratulations!