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Winning ideas

Jason Springs

Jason Springs MBA 09, of GeneWeave Biosciences. See larger image

Cornell businesses, teams and ideas consistently fare well in entrepreneurial contests:

  • Jon Greene, MBA '04, won the grand prize in the April 2009 New York Creative Core Emerging Business Competition for his business, Widetronix, which designs and builds low-power, long-life batteries for microelectronics. GeneWeave Biosciences, a company co-founded by Jason Springs, MBA '09, and Cornell Ph.D. students Diego Rey and Leo Teixeira, was one of five finalists. GeneWeave has developed a technology to rapidly detect bacteria and other substances.
  • In 2008, Brad Treat, MBA '02, won top honors in the same competition with his business, Mezmeriz, which designs and makes Micro-electromechanical System (MEMS) mirrors and mirror modules using a novel carbon fiber materials platform, co-founded by Shahyaan Desai '00. And in 2007, e2e Materials LLC, another Cornell startup, which produces petroleum-free, biodegradable composites for use in applications ranging from furniture to action sports equipment and was founded by Anil Netravali and Pat Govang, won the competition.
  • Bombyx Technologies, which developed innovative technology to regenerate eyesight lost due to injury, was founded by Benjamin Rollins, MBA '09, and Brian Lawrence, a Ph.D. student in biomedical engineering. It received top honors at the first annual Cornell Venture Challenge in April 2009, sponsored by BR Ventures.
  • Seth Flowerman, MBA '09, was named to the top three in the Entrepreneurs' Organization's Global Student Entrepreneur Awards contest in November 2008 and won the social impact award for his business Career Explorations LLC, which helps high school and college students find customized internships.
  • David Wax, MBA '04, and his business FreeGreen, a Web site offering free and low-cost home plans for "green" construction projects,, received top honors in the April 2008 BR Ventures Business Idea Competition.

Supporting entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurship@Cornell, eLab and Entrepreneurship@Johnson are not the only campus organizations offering myriad resources to foster the entrepreneurial spirit.

The School of Hotel Administration's Leland C. and Mary M. Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship supports and enables innovation and new business formation in the hospitality industry. The institute provides students with guidance on entrepreneurship study, introduces students to hospitality entrepreneurs and encourages students to pursue entrepreneurial endeavors.

The Cornell Center for Technology Enterprise and Commercialization (CCTEC) is responsible for the management of Cornell University's technology. CCTEC supports Cornell's land-grant mission by leveraging Cornell's innovation to promote regional economic development to benefit the public.

The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the Department of Applied Economics and Management are home to Cornell's undergraduate business program. Students in this program can specialize in business and applied economics areas, including entrepreneurship.

The Kevin M. McGovern Family Center for Venture Development in the Life Sciences is a business incubator scheduled to open soon in Weill Hall. McGovern, who was named the 2007 Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year, his wife, Lisa and their two children, Jarett '03 and Ashley '08, made a $7.5 million commitment to Weill Hall to name the center.

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