VCU Alumni Pitch Competition
6 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. Oct. 28, 2020
Grab a front-row seat at the second annual VCU Alumni Pitch Competition. Five finalists will pitch their business ventures virtually to a panel of judges for a chance to win funding, resources and the ultimate title: 2020 VCU Alumni Pitch Competition champion.
Meet the finalists
Elliot Roth (B.S.’15/En; Cert.’15/DVC) and Surjan Singh (B.S.’17/En)
Based in Los Angeles, Spira creates replacements for artificial colorants and animal proteins using carbon-negative CRISPR-edited algae. The company partners with farmers in developing countries to grow its proprietary strains, then uses a unique fractionation technology to upcycle those raw materials into ingredients for food, cosmetic and textile companies.
Hassan Pitts (M.F.A.’09/A) and Jennida Chase (M.F.A.’09/A)
The Recollection Project is a transmedia project highlighting memories of senior African American residents in Richmond, Virginia, from eras of profound social change. The project features powerful memories shared from a wide cross section of the community, tying their stories to their physical points of origin to ground the memories in the concrete space of the city. The project’s goal is to create an interactive, public-facing oral history collection that features 360-degree videos and an interactive map.
Matthew Johnson (B.S.’11/B)
Ol Dominion Beer and Exploration Club
Ol Dominion LLC is developing an online platform to provide club members with accessibility and home delivery of beer and merchandise from its partnered breweries throughout every corner of Virginia. The company also works strategically with Virginia Tourism to promote outdoor adventures, small towns and major events throughout the state to make brewery exploration a catalyst for promoting travel to seldom-visited Main Streets.
Michael Beiro (B.S.’18/En)
Linebird brings the unmanned systems revolution to power line maintenance. The company’s system enables drones to bring tools and other payloads into contact with live power lines. Drones have been deployed in the power-utility sector at scale, but only for no-touch work such as visual, infrared and LiDAR inspection. By enabling live-line work via unmanned systems, Linebird will drastically reduce the cost, liability and hazardous man-hours associated with line maintenance and inspection.
Jad Elahmad (B.S.’19/B) and Julia Penny (B.F.A.’20/A)
The MyMinute application keeps students focused while they work online by eliminating distractions. Different from traditional website blockers, MyMinute uses algorithms to determine whether a site that has both educational and entertaining content such as YouTube, for example, is classified as productive or distracting.
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