A dozen entrepreneurs — some Carnegie Mellon University affiliated and others not — this week pitched their ideas for addressing issues such as opioid overdoses and finding parking spots to an audience of 200 that included more seasoned founders.
Kit Needham, director of Project Olympus and CMU’s assistant dean for entrepreneurial initiatives, told Technical.ly the annual event is intended to offer entrepreneurs the opportunity to introduce young companies to the Pittsburgh entrepreneurship ecosystem and remind alums that the university’s resources are still at their disposal.
“The range of topics was fairly extensive,” Needham said. “We had life sciences, we had apps to help women with postpartum depression, how to find parking, how to prevent opioid deaths. I mean, it just was extremely diverse.”
Two startups that stood out to Needham were Resilient Lifescience and Manakin, which both have CMU alumni founders with Resilient Lifescience cofounder Brad Holden and Manakin founder Vaishnavi Yathirajam. Resilient Lifescience is developing a wearable product to stop opioid overdoses by injecting naloxone into users. Manakin is developing a sensor that can detect pathogens in the air.
“With Resilient Lifescience, [Holden] has only been at it for a year, but he just got funding — major funding” from the Richard King Mellon Foundation, Needham said. “And the Manakin sensor will be able to tell you when the chance for infection is present, and I’ve never seen anything quite like it.”
Ultimately, Needham said that the strength of the Show & Tell for those who participate is the chance to learn, teach others about the problems they’re trying to solve, and maybe walk away with a new mentor or investor.
“We have scientists, we have investors, we have the press,” Needham said.“There are lots of folks there who have connections and want to support our startups and by coming here they can get visibility, connections and introductions.”
Here are all the startups that presented at the 2023 Show & Tell:
- Certably Solutions
- Fluid Reality
- Magnify Bioscience
- Piximo Robotics
- Resilient Lifescience
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