Announcing Finalists for the 2017 VTKW Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals


VT KnowledgeWorks is pleased to announce the finalist teams chosen to present their business concepts at this year’s Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals taking place on Wednesday, April 12, 2017, at 1:00 p.m. at The Inn at Virginia Tech and Skelton Conference Center, Blacksburg, Virginia. The Challenge provides a unique opportunity for student teams from Virginia Tech to present their business concepts before a panel of local business leaders.



The five Virginia Tech student teams competing for the grand prize include:

  • Bar None Insulated Apparel (Chad Nexon and John Hearney): A revolutionary clothing insulation start up, utilizing bio-mimicry to keep extremities up to three times as warm as today’s best insulation.
  • BioactiVT (Andy Cohen, Angad Verma, Ariana Spalter, Brittany Horton, Danny Murray, David Barto, Eddie Krutyanskiy, Eryney Marrogi, Ethan Hodges, Gavin Vess, Gina Muan, Harrison Lavery, Jay Pennington, Lan Le, Lucy Epshteyn, Max McGrath, Nam Ngo, Qiao-Qiao Wang, Rachel Kitchen, Ranger Turner, Riley Allison, Samuel Washburn, Sarah Sandquist, and Skyler Grunberg): Tempo is BioactiVT’s answer to the “pulse oximeter gap” in the developing world. Operating rooms in developing nations are performing surgeries without these life-saving medical devices because no current solution meets their specific needs. Tempo is solar-powered, which means it can be used in even the most remote locations without a reliable power grid. All contact surfaces on Tempo can be boiled, a more accessible sanitation method in these areas. These design features create a robust, self-powered device with a lower lifetime cost than any oximeter currently on the market.
  • College Dough (Danielle Jeffers): College Dough is an all-in-one resource for students who are applying for scholarships to attend the college of their choice. Students can meet all deadlines with our project management system, find new scholarships in our database, and improve the quality of their submissions with our how-to library. College Dough is the perfect resource for students who want to earn scholarships, eliminate loans, and explore life!
  • RheoPrinters (Mubashir Q. Ansari, Craig D. Mansfield, and Maxwell Propp): We will manufacture Contoured Hot Ends for 3D-Printing, enabling processing of pure high performance thermoplastics as well as composite filaments reinforced with either short fibers or the continuous fibers.
  • Tech Wound Solutions (Juliana Downey, Tucker King, Elisabeth Rebholz, and Kimberly Wyluda): Tech Wound Solutions has created Kare Powder: a topical, advanced wound care dressing that enables faster and more effective healing for chronic wound care patients.
  • This year’s prizes include:
    $5,000 – Plastics One Advanced Manufacturing Award for the most outstanding tangible product
  • $5,000 – VT KnowledgeWorks Information Technology Award for the most outstanding intangible product or service
  • $10,000 – An additional grand prize for one of the two teams that receive the Advanced Manufacturing Award or the Information Technology Award
  • $5,000 – People’s Choice Award sponsored by Virginia Tech Pamplin College of Business

Tickets to attend are free and include access to the competition, networking reception, and awards presentation. Register at

For more information contact Jim Flowers, Executive Director of VT KnowledgeWorks, at 540-443-9100, extension 1 or at [email protected].

VT KnowledgeWorks wants to thank our generous sponsors of the Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals including Plastics One Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, and Virginia Tech Pamplin College of Business.

vtkw squareVT KnowledgeWorks encourages and enables creative entrepreneurship world-wide, through innovative curriculum, local business resource centers, and a global network of cooperating regions, all focused on three essential contributors to success: clear understanding of fundamental business principles; access to timely, relevant information; and meaningful personal and corporate relationships.  It is a subsidiary of the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, supported by the continuing confidence and enthusiasm of its clients, sponsors and friends, both corporate and individual. Its world headquarters is in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks sponsors include: Allegheny Logistics Group, Apex Systems Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Automation Creations, Inc., BAE SystemsBB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, Carilion ClinicCelaneseCity of Roanoke, Click & Pledge, Commonwealth Group, EDCG.J. Hopkins, Inc., Meridium from GE DigitalNational Bank, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Roanoke-Blacksburg Technology CouncilShentelSunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc., and Wordsprint.

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