Carnegie Mellon University

Monday, April 9, 2018

CMU Qatar

CMU Qatar Trio Takes Top Prize at CMU-Q's Quick Startup Competition

For the third year in a row, a team from Qatar University took first place at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar’s (CMU-Q) Quick Startup competition. The annual three-day competition for college students and recent graduates challenges participants to develop a business plan and pitch their idea for a business.

Read Albawaba Business

Saturday, April 7, 2018

CMU Venture Challenge

CMU Venture Challenge Final Live Round

The CMU Venture Challenge, organized by the CMU Undergraduate Entrepreneurship Association (UEA), is an annual competition where student entrepreneurs from around the nation come to CMU to pitch their startup ideas to a panel of judges to compete for funding, legal services and mentorship. This year, eleven finalists were selected from 70 applicants to pitch to judges from GGV Capital, Draper Triangle Ventures, Meyer, Unkovic and Scott Law and BlueTree Capital.

The CMUVC, held at the Tepper School of Business this past Saturday, April 7, also included two fireside chats, featuring successful CMU alumni founders: Robb MyerNoWait, Austin WebbRoBotany, Xunjie ZhangNImbus Bionics and student founders Abhishek Bhargava of VectorDash and Matthew Kim of Paragon. The winners included:

First place: VectorDash (CMU, Abhishek Bhargava), University
of Maryland.
Second place: Treyetech, Johns Hopkins University
Third place: Paragon, Yale, MIT, UPenn, NYU and Dartmouth

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

2018 McGinnis Venture Competition

Swartz Center For Entrepreneurship Names 2018 McGinnis Venture Competition Winners

After three rounds of competition, graduate track team Zensors and undergraduate track team EmbroQuant claimed the top spots in the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship’s 2018 McGinnis Venture Competition on Tuesday, March 27.

The McGinnis Venture Competition pinned 32 student teams against one another to compete for $60,000 in investments. Teams were judged in three rounds on video pitches, executive summaries and mini-business plans. For the final round, nine graduate and five undergraduate teams pitched to a live panel of entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. Throughout the competition, participants received mentorship and guidance from alumni entrepreneurs and venture capitalists to help them to raise capital and receive feedback.

Zensors took first place in the graduate division winning $25,000. The team includes School of Computer Science doctoral students Gierad Laput and Anhong Guo, alongside Assistant Professor Chris Harrison, Associate Professor Jeffrey Bigham and researcher Anuraag Jain of the Human Computer Interaction Institute...

Read the full story at the Tepper School of Business

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Robb Myer

Tom Galluzo

Swartz Center EIR Robb Myer and IAM Robotics' Tom Galluzzo Win Carnegie Science Awards

Each year, the Carnegie Science Center honors a select number of deserving educators, science/technology leaders and organizations for their outstanding work in our region.

This year's honorees include Robb Myer, Entrepreneur-In-Residence at the CMU Swartz Center, who won the 'Entrepreneur' award for NoWait and Tom Galluzo, founder of Pittsburgh's IAMRobotics, who won the 'Information Technology' award.

Awards will be presented at a ceremony on Friday, May 4, 2018 at the Carnegie Music Hall in Pittsburgh.

Read the Carnegie Science Center

Monday, April 2, 2018

Huawei's P20 Series Debuts With Qeexo's FingerSense Technology

CMU spinout Qeexo, developer of machine learning and AI solutions for sensor data, has announced that FingerSense, the company's next-generation touch platform, is available on Huawei's recently debuted P20 series smartphones. Huawei announced these smartphones during a launch event last week in Paris.

Qeexo is venture-backed and headquartered in Mountain View, CA, with offices in Pittsburgh, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Beijing.

Read the GlobalNewsWire

Friday, March 30, 2018



AI and Healthcare Startup Take First Prize at the McGinnis Venture Competition

This year's McGinnis Venture Competition, pulled in a record number of Carnegie Mellon students, alumni, faculty and members of the community to celebrate CMU's best and brightest entrepreneurs. Overall, fourteen graduate and undergraduate student-led teams competed in the competition. The final teams pitched ideas in the AI, healthcare, nutrition, robotics and IoT spaces.

The first place winner at the graduate level was Zensors, the AI powered visual sensing startup which was awarded a $25K convertible note with an additional $2,500 from Rough Draft Ventures. First place in the undergraduate track went to EmboQuant, designer of smart catheters, which received a $4K grant. 

A highlight this year was the honoring of entrepreneurship professor, Frank Demmler for his 30 years of teaching entrepreneurship at CMU.

Choolaah founder Raji Sankar also announced the winner of the CMU Choolaah Grand Challenge, which ended this week. CMU Heinz student and Swartz Fellow Tania Taloute won first prize of $1K cash and one year of free Choolaah meals for designing a referral program for customers called Refer and Repeat.

This year's McGinnis Venture Competition was sponsored by the McGinnis family, Choolaah, EQT and Rough Draft Ventures. 

Read the Pittsburgh Business Times

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Kaplseh Kapadia

How CMU Alumnus Kalpesh Kapadia is Helping the Credit Invisibles

For most college students, obtaining credit is a necessary milestone on the path towards financial freedom and recognition. However, there is an increasingly large number of them, many who are foreign, in the U.S. who are considered "credit invisible."

Deserve, founded by CMU alumnus Kalpesh Kapadia, utilizes alternative, forward-looking data to increase the likelihood for an "invisible" applicant to obtain credit. 

Read the Lendedu

Thursday, March 29, 2018

CMU Alumnus Founds Prize for Undergrad Entrepreneurs

In collaboration with the Tsai Center for Innovative Thinking at Yale, CMU alumnus and medical entrepreneur Jonathan Rothberg has founded the Rothberg Catalyzer Prize, which allocates funding to students looking to develop an innovative hardware solution to a medical challenge. In its initial stages, the Rothberg Catalyzer will provide $100K annually for three years to each of four universities: Yale, Brown, Carnegie Mellon and the University of Pennsylvania.  

Read the Yale Daily News

Tuesday, March 27, 2018


AI startup wins McGinnis Venture Competition

Zensors, a startup using AI-powered visual sensing on existing cameras to make smart shops, offices and restaurants, won Carnegie Mellon University’s McGinnis Venture Competition Tuesday evening.

As first place winner of the graduate level, the startup was awarded a $25,000 convertible note and given an additional $2,500 from Rough Draft Ventures.

On the graduate level, TalkMeUp won second place and got a $15,000 convertible note. The startup uses artificial intelligence software to provide personalized and on-demand communication training.

Nabala Ascent, applying data analytics to drone commercial applications, won third place on the graduate level and got a $10,000 convertible note.

For the undergraduate track, EmboQuant got first place and received a $4,000 grant. The startup designs smart catheters.

InvenTower got second place in the undergraduate track, receiving a $2,500 grant and an additional $2,500 from Rough Draft Ventures.

Fourteen student-led groups competed in the competition.

David Mawhinney, executive director of CMU’s Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, said the teams impressed him.

“I got comments from many of the judges … that the bar here at Carnegie Mellon continues to rise,” he said.

Read the Pittsburgh Business Times

Tuesday, March 20, 2018


CMU's RadPiper Robot Can Measure Radiation Inside Pipes of Nuclear Facilities

A team at CMU, led by robotics professor Red Whittaker, has designed a robot that can crawl inside potentially contaminated pipes and measure precise amounts of Uranium 235. The robot could shave tens of millions of dollars from the cost to inspect shuttered nuclear sites and prevent humans from undertaking an often dangerous, difficult and tedious job. 

Read the TribLive

Friday, March 16, 2018


CMU's BOT Meeting Showcased Students During Loch Ness Tank Event

CMU students who presented at the Founders 50 event last fall were invited to pitch their innovative ideas at a Loch Ness Tank event, which took place during the recent board of trustees meeting held in February in the Bay Area. The event, moderated by the CMU Swartz Center's Dave Mawhinney, included the following teams: Carbon Fiber Trombone explores the use of carbon fiber as an alternative to conventional brass (Andrew Ye, Edward Rowland); Clothing Design Xinnovative clothing line for persons with physical limitations (Damian Dominguez, Jessica Cronin) and Ugly Ducklingan AI robotic camera (Pranav Kumar, James Wang, Tiffany Yu). 

Friday, March 16, 2018


VentureBridge Silicon Valley Summer Program

Applications are open for the VentureBridge summer 2018 program. This program helps CMU students and alumni teams (Pittsburgh and Silicon Valley) to develop their viable ideas into business concepts.

Selected teams will receive a $25K investment in the form of a convertible note. There may be other industry specific grants available for startups operating in specific areas.

Find out more and apply by April 6, 2018.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Wigle Whiskey

Wigle Whiskey Receives 'Best in Class Gin' and to Receive Gold Medal for PA Bourbon

Pittsburgh's Wigle Whiskey, founded by Tepper School of Business alumna and Swartz Fellow Meredith Grelli, announced that it now holds the title of Best in Class Gin and will receive a Gold Medal for Pennsylvania Bourbon as American Craft Spirits Association Awards.
Wigle also received awards for 16 other spirits.  


Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Andy Chan

Young Entrepreneurs: Andy Chan, VIT Co-founder

As part of the Pittsburgh Business Times' new Young Entrepreneurs series, Andy Chan, CEO and co-founder of VIT Initiative (Project Olympus PROBE) gives advice and talks about the pros and cons of being a young entrepreneur. VIT is a health, safety and human capital performance company that designs and deploys employee, self-monitoring feedback and training technologies. 

Read Pittsburgh Business Times This article requires a subscription.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Agility Robotics

Agility Robotics in the News

Agility Robotics, co-founded by CMU alumnus and CEO Damion Shelton, is building robots that can traverse any terrainfrom rocky hillside to sidewalks. Its first product, Cassie, has found work at half a dozen research institutions.  


Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Shark Tank

Shark Tank Casting Call in Pittsburgh on March 28

Shark Tank is making its first-ever casting stop in Pittsburgh on Wednesday, March 28, 2018. A team from the show will have an open call at the Rivers Casino to find new inventions and ideas for an upcoming season of the show. Find out more and how to apply. 

Monday, March 12, 2018

Laurie Barkman

Tepper Alumna Laurie Barkman Wins 2018 Women of Influence Award

CMU Tepper School of Business alumna and chief marketing and development officer at Burns White, LLC, Laurie Barkman, is a winner of the 2018 Women of Influence Award. Presented by the Pittsburgh Business Times, the award honors the region's most influential business women at both for-profits and nonprofits. Laurie is also a mentor at the CMU Swartz Center.

Read Pittsburgh Business Times This article requires a subscription.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Farnam Jahanian

Farnam Jahanian Named President of Carnegie Mellon University

Farnam Jahanian, the nationally recognized computer scientist, successful entrepreneur, senior public servant and respected leader in higher education, has been appointed as the 10th president of Carnegie Mellon University. The appointment is effective immediately, with a formal inauguration scheduled for fall 2018.

Jahanian takes the reins at a time of unprecedented momentum for the university. In spring 2018, CMU will open a 300,000-square-foot building in the David A. Tepper Quadrangle, which will serve as the new home for the Tepper School of Business as well as a central campus hub with a welcome center, the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, and a laboratory for technology-enhanced learning, among other amenities. 

Read Carnegie Mellon University

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Nathan Pitzer

Tepper MBA Nathan Pitzer Among Finalists at 2018 Rice Competition

Nathan Pitzer, former CMU Graduate Entrepreneurship Club president, Swartz Fellow and founder of find technologies, has been chosen to participate in the 2018 Rice Business Plan Competition. Participants will compete for $1.5M in prizes on April 5-7, 2018.

Find Technologies manages online searches for individuals, allowing them to store progress, transfer work between devices and collaborate with others.

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Jim Swartz Oscar

CMU Alumnus Jim Swartz Wins Oscar for Producing "Icarus"

Jim Swartz, founder of Accel Partners, the CMU Swartz Center, and member of the President’s Global Advisory Council and the Tepper School of Business Board of Advisors, won an Oscar last night for producing “Icarus,” which won an Academy Award for best documentary feature.

Read The Know