VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership Week Expanded

VT KnowledgeWorks is pleased to announce that the Seventh Annual Global Partnership Week has expanded to include a two-day trip to Washington D.C., August 11-13, 2016. Student teams and faculty participating in the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership Week will have the opportunity to experience Washington D.C. through sightseeing trips to museums and monuments, and participating in private tours.

Event attendees will shift to Roanoke and Blacksburg, Virginia, by a chartered bus to enjoy a week-long celebration of entrepreneurship, August 13-20, 2016, where students are housed with local families, spend interactive time with successful technology companies, and enjoy fellowship with each other and with Virginia Tech students during festive meals and social gatherings. The VT KnowledgeWorks Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge celebrates the energy and creativity of university students and their important contributions to the global economy by encouraging them to develop their entrepreneurial ideas. The Challenge provides a unique opportunity for student teams from all over the world to compete for a $25,000 grand prize and VT KnowledgeWorks trophy, as they present their business concepts before a judging panel and regional audience at The Inn at Virginia Tech and Skelton Conference Center, Thursday, August 18.

The Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge in August will recognize and award two teams $10,000 each: the Plastics One Advanced Manufacturing Award for the outstanding tangible product, and the VT KnowledgeWorks Information Technology Award for the outstanding intangible product or service. One of the two teams that receive the Advanced Manufacturing Award or the Information Technology Award will receive an additional $15,000 grand prize. As a permanent tribute to their exceptional efforts, the winning team’s name will be engraved on the permanent VT KnowledgeWorks trophy. Finally, one more team will receive the $5,000 People’s Choice Award sponsored by Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs.

To learn more about the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership Week, go to www.vtkwglobal.com.

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

 

Enter the 2016 VTKW Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals

Enter the 2016 VT KnowledgeWorks Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals, March 30, 2016

VT KnowledgeWorks will host its annual Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals on March 30, 2016. The objectives of the Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals are to encourage students to develop their entrepreneurial ideas, enhance understanding of requirements for a successful business venture, and showcase the creativity of students at Virginia Tech.

Virginia Tech student teams will compete for the chance to win one of three scholarship prizes:

  • The $5,000 Plastics One Advanced Manufacturing Award for the outstanding tangible product
  • The $5,000 VT KnowledgeWorks Information Technology Award for the most outstanding intangible product or service
  • An additional $10,000 grand prize for one of the two teams that receive the Advanced Manufacturing Award or the Information Technology Award
  • The $5,000 People’s Choice Award

Thanks to the support of our generous sponsors, the grand prize winner of the Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals will also receive:

View last year’s grand prize winner here.

People’s Choice
The People’s Choice award will be selected by vote of the event attendees. VT KnowledgeWorks would like all contestants and audience members to participate in honoring the most outstanding teams, based on the judging criteria.  The formal judging panel uses these same criteria to determine the winning team. The team/concept with the highest overall ranking by the attendees, and which is not selected by the judging panel as the grand prize winner, will earn the $5,000 People’s Choice award. The $5,000 will be awarded to the selected team in the form of scholarships.

View last year’s People’s Choice winner here.

The competition is open to all graduate and undergraduate students at Virginia Tech. All participants must be full-time, registered students at Virginia Tech with an average team age of 27 years or fewer to participate and receive prizes if selected as a finalist team. Up to five finalist teams will be selected to present at the Challenge.

A business concept is an attractive and well-researched market opportunity for which the team has devised a powerful and innovative response, including a viable financial business model. The prize is focused on supporting educational entrepreneurship at an early stage of development. Therefore, applicants are encouraged and expected to have a working prototype, but they must not have received cash investments from private investors, government agency funding beyond research grants, nor offered product(s) for sale except in market survey mode at the time the application form is submitted: February 5, 2016. The judges consider the viability of the market opportunity, the strength of the team’s response, the strength and balance of the team, the overall predictability of a success, and the professionalism of the presentation.

Proposed products/services that support a sustainable environment or specifically address needs of underdeveloped countries are encouraged, but no special credit will be assigned to such business concepts.

The Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals contestant registration deadline is February 5, 2016. Attendee tickets are free and include access to the Global Entrepreneurship Challenge Semifinals, networking reception, and awards presentation. Register as a contestant or attendee online athttp://www.vtknowledgeworks.com/gecsemifinals/2016/registration.

Businesses can get details about advertising during this event by contacting Christine Spalding at 540-443-9100 ext. 3 or via email at christine.spalding@vtknowledgeworks.com.

New This Year! – ACC Innovation Competition

For undergraduates only, teams chosen as semifinalists will also be entered into the inaugural Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Innovation Competition. These teams will deliver a 3-minute pitch in Blacksburg on March 3, and the winning team will represent Virginia Tech at the ACC Innovation Competition in Atlanta on April 6.

VT KnowledgeWorks Global Challenge Semifinals Sponsors include Plastics One Inc.

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

VTKW Global Outreach Reaches Over 6000 Miles

VT KnowledgeWorks really is, “encouraging and enabling entrepreneurship, worldwide.”

Jim Flowers, Executive Director of VT KnowledgeWorksIn an unusual demonstration of global outreach by VT KnowledgeWorks, Jim Flowers, executive director, recently delivered a two-part online, live entrepreneurship workshop series from VTKW’s home in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA to select audiences assembled in Baghdad, Iraq, connecting discussions of entrepreneurship over 6000 miles (10,000+ kilometers).

Under the auspices of the Office of the U.S. Speaker Program, Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State, Flowers conducted interactive sessions with prospective entrepreneurs and some of their local Iraqi mentors on November 11 and 25, 2015.

“I was particularly impressed by two social entrepreneurship initiatives aimed at helping displaced people living in refugee camps and homeless street beggars,” said Flowers. “We all know that entrepreneurship is challenging and risky. I am truly in awe of the all those attempting startups in a highly unstable environment, for the benefit of truly disadvantaged people. They are heroes.”

For more information, contact Jim Flowers, Executive Director of VT KnowledgeWorks, at 540-443-9100, extension 1 or at jim.flowers@vtknowledgeworks.com.

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

 

GolfAR™ Releases PuttAR™: A Golf Simulator for Smartphones and Tablets

GolfAR™ has just released PuttAR™, the world’s first golf simulator for smartphones and tablets. PuttAR™ is a new Android mobile app for golfers that makes putting practice into a fun and challenging game. “PuttAR is designed to improve golfer performance and enjoyment through understanding the architecture of the green” says Michael O’Brien, CEO.

Scene from the PuttAR™ app. Elevation gradient and shaded relief.Scene from the PuttAR™ app. Elevation gradient and shaded relief.

Enhanced 3-D modeling and realistic physical simulation enables new ways of seeing a green, learning its breaks, and becoming a better putter. Based on LiDAR laser scanned site surveys of real golf courses, PuttAR’s 3-D dataset delivers the highest accuracy in greens’ modeling.

The PuttPilot™ user interface introduces terrain analysis and precision to golf simulation. Multi-view cameras and architectural graphics reveal the complex design of the green. Realistic physics and precise controls enable the player to develop real world green reading and putting skills. Unlike previous putting simulations, PuttAR players predict their own putts, making it an active learning tool.

PuttAR™ is designed to provide a focused putting experience with no advertising or in-app purchase pop ups to distract the player. User-friendly, players can select from easy to extreme difficulty, and can play in short blocks of time. Kid-friendly, there is no user data collection or mature content.

PuttAR™ for Android mobile devices can be found on Google Play at https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.golfar.puttarone

Apple iOS mobile and PC desktop versions of PuttAR™ will be released in late November.

High-definition 3-D model, putt simulation and slope analysis running on a handheld device.High-definition 3-D model, putt simulation and slope analysis running on a handheld device.

About the Company

PuttAR™ is a product of GolfAR™, a company applying reality technologies to increase golfer performance and enjoyment. GolfAR is a division of rGolf, Inc., headquartered at the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center in Blacksburg, Virginia. A member of VTKnowledgeWorks, rGolf was founded by Michael O’Brien in March 2013.

Michael O’Brien, CEO
michael@golfar.us
http://www.linkedin.com/in/michaelobrien3780

GolfAR – Golf courses on the brain!™
2000 Kraft Drive, Suite 1500
Blacksburg, VA 24060
(540) 443-9296
www.golfar.us
https://www.facebook.com/GolfARTech
https://twitter.com/GolfARTech

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

THC Technologies Increases VoiceVantage™ Enrollment by Forty-six Percent

Voice Vantage Biometric Voice Verification TechnologiesTHC Technologies Corp, a private corporation engaged in the global biometric solutions market, today announced it has experienced a further validation of its VoiceVantage voice verification software within the international financial services market.

THC CEO Frances Lynch said, “THC’s premier international financial services client has increased its VoiceVantage™ enrollment by forty-six percent. THC provides the core proprietary voice verification solutions Partners deploy to secure software applications, often at military grade, for multiple security markets including the international financial services sector. THC and its Partners market voice activated solutions that advance client’s cyber security capabilities, increase client satisfaction and enhance organizational resilience.”

Tomas T. Wilkerson, THC’s VP of Marketing concurred saying, “THC is the obvious choice for our Partners and clients as they address today’s secure communication challenges. Our advanced security products in combination with our Partner’s expertise offer innovative solutions positioning us to capitalize on the substantial financial security market opportunity worldwide.

Organizations in public education, financial services, healthcare, government and many other industries maximize performance and provide investment protection because THC and our partners deliver complete best-of-breed voice authentication solutions. We focus on designing, developing and deploying voice solutions with our partners sharing the common goal to create best-of-breed hardware and software configurations on which to deploy their industry specific solutions.”

Safe Harbor Statement

As provided by the “Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Security Litigation Reform Act of 1995,” THC Technologies Corporation (THC) cautions the reader that this release includes certain information that may constitute forward-looking statements. Actual events or results may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements.

For more information contact:

Frances Lynch, CEO
THC Technologies Corporation
540-443-9290
flynch@thctechnologies.com
www.voicevantage.com

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

Mar-Bal Partners with University EcoCAR 3 Teams

Mar-Bal Partners with University EcoCAR 3 TeamsVirginia Tech (VT) students “invent the future” every day through research and creativity.  The Hybrid Electric Vehicle Team of Virginia Tech (HEVT) is doing just that as they take on a four-year hybrid vehicle competition.

HEVT has been working on advancing vehicle technology since 1994.  The team is currently comprised of around 50 undergraduate students who are competing in EcoCAR 3, a collegiate competition sponsored by General Motors and the U.S. Department of Energy.

Sixteen colleges are participating in the competition, with the goal to reengineer a 2016 Chevrolet Camaro to be more fuel-efficient, all while maintaining aspects such as safety and performance.

EcoCAR 3 is split into four one-year phases, with a competition at the end of each phase.  Currently, HEVT is in year two of the competition, the design phase.  HEVT placed second at year one competition.

“The Year Two Competition is focused on the continuation of the engineering design process and the beginning of the vehicle build,” said William Dvorkin, HEVT EcoCar 3 project manager.  “For us to score well this year, all components must be installed in our vehicle, and it needs to be able to safely operate with basic functionality.”

The competition gives VT students the opportunity to apply what they have learned in the classroom to a meaningful experience.  Technical challenges and barriers due to limited experience are two of the obstacles HEVT has encountered.

“Being a leader on this team puts you at the heart of a fast-paced environment with tons of smart and hard-working students who are constantly trying to better themselves and this team, and you can’t stop it from rubbing off onto you,” Dvorkin said.  “I can’t give enough credit to our undergraduate engineering students who balance their HEVT responsibilities with the rest of their schoolwork and lives outside of the classroom and lab.”

West Virginia University (WVU) is also participating in EcoCAR 3.  HEVT is serving as a mentor to WVU, assisting with the technical standpoint of the project.  However, each team has mutually assisted each other along the way.

“Virginia Tech is a veteran of the EcoCAR competitions and their team has a lot of valuable experience,” said Chelsea Betts, WVU EcoCAR 3 communication manager.  “As our mentor, they are always offering to help in any way that they can and they have a lot of great advice to give.  It has been a wonderful experience working with them and learning from a team that wants us to succeed as well.”

Dr. Andrew Nix, a Virginia Tech alumnus, is WVU’s EcoCAR 3 academic advisor.  Nix won the advisor of the year award in April 2015 for all EcoCAR 3 teams.

“Sometimes team members joke around with Dr. Nix and tell him that he has to choose a side and that it better be WVU,” said Garret Carden, WVU EcoCAR 3 development officer.  “But all joking aside, that connection is what makes our teams so close.  We don’t think of Virginia Tech as a rival in this competition because we are all in this together.”

Mar-Bal has sponsored both VT and WVU EcoCAR 3 teams, and has spoken to the WVU team to raise awareness about composites.  Mar-Bal plans to speak to HEVT on November 9.

“The EcoCar 3 project represents one of our university outreach programs and we are very excited to be working with Virginia Tech and West Virginia University on this revolutionary development,” stated Ron Poff, Director of Global Marketing and Brands for Mar-Bal, Inc.  “We started 2015 with a strategic marketing plan to engage with the university community – both students and faculty – to share the benefits and advantages of composites while also developing relationships with the next generation of engineers.  We feel that these relationships will help to drive potential commercialization of academic research, increase the awareness of composites and ultimately grow the specification of composites in the future.  It has been a pleasure to get to know the Engineering students at both Virginia Tech and West Virginia University over the past few months.  Their eagerness to expand their knowledge base about composites and also get to know more about manufacturing has been very energizing.”

For more information about HEVT, visit http://ecocar3.org/vthevt/about-us/ and https://www.facebook.com/vtHEVT.

For more information about EcoCAR 3 at WVU, visit http://ecocar3.org/wvu/about-us/ and https://www.facebook.com/wvuecocar3.

For more information about Mar-Bal, Inc., visit www.mar-bal.com or call 440-539-6595.

Press Release drafted by Ashlyn Davidson, PR Intern for Mar-Bal, Inc. and a Senior Public Relations Major at Virginia Tech.

About Mar-Bal, Inc.

Mar-Bal, Inc., headquartered in Chagrin Falls, OH, is a compounder and molder of Thermoset composite products.  Since 1970, Mar-Bal has engineered and manufactured quality, customized materials and parts while delivering unmatched client cost-effectiveness through superior customer service and commitment to the total value.  Mar-Bal serves the appliance, electrical and industrial marketplaces from their four facilities in North America and Asia Sales Office located in Shanghai, China.  Mar-Bal, an ISO 9001:2008 Registered Company, continues to develop innovative products and has a portfolio of brands and proprietary products.

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

Alumni News from 2015 People’s Choice Winner, Team EntoLog

The Global Partnership Week offers university students and faculty from all over the world a chance to collaborate, form partnerships, and build their global networks. Members of the partnership gather annually during a weeklong event hosted by VT KnowledgeWorks, Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech, and citizens and businesses of the Roanoke-Blacksburg region.

Alumni News

Share your news with us at info@vtkwglobal.com.

Team EntoLog, People’s Choice Winner of the 2015 VT KnowledgeWorks Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge, received national television coverage from Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen in Switzerland for their business concept, nutritious food bars full of protein-rich nutrients extracted from insects. Click here, and scroll down to the first video thumbnail listed as “Meinrad Koch” to view his interview.

Team EntoLog at the 2015 Challenge

Team EntoLog

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

Save the Date for 2016 Global Partnership Events

The Global Partnership Week offers university students and faculty from all over the world a chance to collaborate, form partnerships, and build their global networks. Members of the partnership gather annually during a weeklong event hosted by VT KnowledgeWorks, Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech, and citizens and businesses of the Roanoke-Blacksburg region.

Mark your calendar for these Global Partnership-related events in 2016:

Announcing the 2016 Global Challenge Virtual Preliminary

University teams will test their business concept by confirming that their idea meets a customer need, occupies a differentiated position in the marketplace, and has a viable business model and value proposition. The winner will advance to a week-long celebration of entrepreneurship at the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Student Entrepreneurship Challenge in the USA and compete on a global stage for the $25,000 grand prize, August 14-20, 2016.

Learn more about the Virtual Preliminary rules, guidelines, and deadlines at http://vtkwglobal.com/2016/prelim.

Institutions are encouraged to use this one-page flyer to advertise the VT KnowledgeWorks Global Challenge Virtual Preliminary to their university students.

Testimonial from $25,000 Grand Prize Winner

Read an event testimonial from Team Visionear from King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT), Thailand, the 2015 grand prize winner and recipient of the Plastics One Advanced Manufacturing Award.

Team Visionear at the 2015 Challenge

Team Visionear, winner of 2015 Global Partnership Week Grand Prize

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

Announcing the Fall 2015 Game Changers Challenge

game_changers

VT KnowledgeWorks is pleased to announce the Game Changers Challenge, an opportunity for one entrepreneur or entrepreneurial team to qualify for a $25,000 “Running Start” loan plus a package of free startup assistance services. Solid runners-up may also qualify for free startup assistance.

Any aspiring entrepreneur or entrepreneurial team may enter by submitting an application by October 12, 2015. The challenge is open to all who meet the following criteria:

  • The product or service to be provided by the venture must either be consumed (not simply re-marketed) by another business, or be integrated into a more complex end-product for downstream sale.
  • The targeted buyers must constitute a relatively narrow demographic niche that can be addressed with limited resources.
  • The proposed product or service must powerfully address some widely acknowledged niche need.
  • High leverage must be obtained by the $25,000 (not just the first $25,000 out of a $1M needed for launch, for instance).
  • The entrepreneurial team must be able to fill the technology leadership roles in the proposed venture.
  • The team must be committed to locating business operations in the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center.
  • Any intellectual property related to the enterprise must be appropriately owned or licensed by the enterprise.

Finalists will be selected by VT KnowledgeWorks staff, and will then be invited to make a 15-minute presentation to the Running Start Committee on their proposed new ventures. There will be no public events, nor will competing teams be allowed to attend each other’s presentations. In the absence of a solid applicant, no loan will be made. This is a qualifying process, not a contest.

Proposals must be submitted in accordance with the guidelines available on the VT KnowledgeWorks website www.vtknowledgeworks.com. The deadline for the fall 2015 application submissions is October 12, 2015. Applications should be submitted to info@vtknowledgeworks.com. The selection committee will review applications and VT KnowledgeWorks will communicate with applicants shortly thereafter. Awards will be announced in mid-November.

For more information contact Jim Flowers, Executive Director of VT KnowledgeWorks, at 540-443-9100, extension 1 or at jim.flowers@vtknowledgeworks.com.

Keep in the know about VT KnowledgeWorks through Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.

VTKW Executive Director Jim Flowers Wins Small Business Advocate Award

Roanoke Regional Chamber 29th Annual Small Business Awards

Congratulations to Roanoke County garden retailer Greenbrier Nurseries for receiving the 2015 Small Business of the Year award on Thursday night, given by the Roanoke Regional Chamber!

The chamber and Roanoke Regional Small Business Development Center honored the Starkey Road business at the 29th Annual Small Business Awards dinner at the Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center. The event is one of the chamber’s largest. This year about 80 businesses were nominated for various awards. The Small Business of the Year is typically the most coveted.

“The Small Business Awards selection committee was impressed Greenbrier Nurseries’ story of adapting from being a leading independent garden retailer to setting up an on-site farmers market allowing local agricultural businesses a place to offer their produce and goods directly to the public,” said chamber President Joyce Waugh.
The Roanoke Times.

VT KnowledgeWorks Executive Director Jim Flowers was given the Small Business Advocate award for all of his hard work promoting and guiding entrepreneurship in the region.

Jim is a veteran of over four decades of service as a senior executive and consultant to technology-based companies, most recently as architect and Executive Director of the VT KnowledgeWorks entrepreneurship support program at the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Under Jim’s leadership, VT KnowledgeWorks has established itself as the Commonwealth’s institutional leader in programs to support creative entrepreneurship as a driver of economic development, and is well known for innovative outreach programs.  The VT KnowledgeWorks Global Partnership Week attracts students and faculty from all over the world each August.  And the emerging VT KnowledgeWorks Entrepreneurship Alliance will unite business growth programs all over Virginia in a mutually supportive, best practices cooperative.

Jim currently serves on the boards of the Virginia Community Economic Network and the Roanoke-Blacksburg Technology Council, and previously served on the Board of the Virginia Business Incubation Association, including three years as its President.  He received his BA from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut, and his MBA from the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Rochester, Rochester, New York.

Congratulations to all of the Small Business Award Winners!

  • Small business advocate: Jim Flowers, VT KnowledgeWorks
  • Small business veteran of the year: Bill Hume, Interactive Design Group
  • Construction/real estate: Valley Boiler & Mechanical
  • Micro-business (five or fewer employees): Viva la Cupcake
  • Technology: TORC Robotics
  • Business-to-business services: Farmer Auctions
  • Business-to-consumer services: HomeTown Bank
  • Manufacturing: Tecton Products
  • Wholesale/retail: Greenbrier Nurseries
  • Legacy Award (in business for more than 50 years): Mechanical Development Co.
  • Best new small business (in business for one to three years, not eligible for overall award): Soaring Ridge Craft Brewers
  • Not-for-profit arts and culture: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Virginia
  • Not-for-profit health and human services: HopeTree Family Services

For more information, read more of the article about the event in The Roanoke Times, and check in with the Roaonoke Regional Chamber Facebook page.

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VT KnowledgeWorks

VT 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 are in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA.

VT KnowledgeWorks Sponsors

Automation Creations, Inc., BAE Systems, BB&T, The Branch Group, Inc., Brown, Edwards & Company, LLP, CIT GAP Funds, City of Roanoke, Fox 21/27, G.J. Hopkins, Inc., Interactive Achievement, Inc., Meridium, Montgomery County, Virginia Economic Development Department, National Bank, New River Valley Intellectual Property Law, Plastics One Inc., Rackspace, Shentel, SimulTV, SunTrust Bank , TechLab, Third Security, Town of Blacksburg, Town of Christiansburg, Union Bank & Trust, UXB International, Inc., Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, Virginia Tech’s Outreach and International Affairs, VPT, Inc, Wordsprint.