Entrepreneurship



Food Recycling: Connecticut Leads the Way

Brian Paganini '03, vice president and managing director of Quantum Biopower, was honored by the Hartford Business Journal as a "40 Under Forty" award recipient earlier this month. (Nathan Oldham/UConn School of Business)
Brian Paganini ’03, vice president and managing director of Quantum Biopower, was honored by the Hartford Business Journal as a “40 Under Forty” award recipient earlier this month. (Nathan Oldham/UConn School of Business)

Alumnus Brian Paganini ’03 Designed, Runs State’s First Food Waste-to-Energy Facility

When a truck carrying 78,000 pounds of frozen chicken crashed on I-91 in Meriden, Conn., last summer, the food was deemed unsafe to eat and had to be destroyed.

A year prior, the chicken would probably have been incinerated. Continue Reading


Swimming with Sharks

New Crowdfunding Rules Let Small Investors Join a Riskier League

New rules from the Securities and Exchange Commission, which took effect May 16, 2016, open many doors for “ordinary people” to invest in start-ups and other small businesses.

The issuers of the securities that they invest in will not need to affirm the investors’ financial sophistication nor provide them with audited financial statements. The underlying law was signed four years ago, but it has taken a while for the SEC to write the rules, all 685 pages of them.  Continue Reading


TED Talks

Provocative, Well-Honed, Brief Lessons Can Augment Teaching and Learning

You are probably doing it too, watching TED Talks.

The acronym stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design. These are brief, invited presentations, in front of live audiences, most of whom have paid substantial sums to attend.

The annual event began in 1984, and has evolved over time. Now there are offshoots on college campuses and other venues. Today the web makes access easy and most can be viewed after the fact for free. https://www.ted.com/talks.

Why are TED Talks important to the dean of a business school, other than the fact that they are very engaging? Continue Reading


The Investor Pitch

The iQ program is a series of events that starts slowly, and then accelerates very quickly. It all starts with mentor meetings, followed by the application, and then the final pitch to get accepted to iQ. Then, a moment’s anticipation, then workshops, a flood of new ideas, constant networking, and barely enough time to breathe. All the while, you’re working on prototypes, building your business model, and then…  Continue Reading


After Guatemala

Since we have returned from Guatemala our project has gone from a project to a passionate pursuit, a fire has been ignited within us. Before our trip Dr. Lisa Eaton told us that we had to ‘get our feet wet’ and bring Parrot MD to an impoverished country. We didn’t realize how important this advice was until we were in a small village seeing firsthand the problem and how useful our device can be.  There’s a lot to be said for sitting and planning out details but at one point you have to be there to fully understand what needs to be done.Continue Reading


The Final Applications Are In

The final applications are in. The iQ judges will be sifting through over 50 applications to find the top 16 innovations. Those winners will then be asked to give presentations on their ideas, and eight of them will be invited to iQ’s summer incubator. The top three get prizes of $15,000, $10,000, and $5,000.

In the past few workshops, iQ focused on understanding innovation and commercial potential of products. Innovation can be defined as an invention plus its distribution. The invention itself needs to bring something to the market that is different than what is already out there. As Professor Rich Dino would say, how is it cheaper, better, or faster? Continue Reading


The Parrot Is Guatemala Bound!

We’re only a few days away from being on the plane to Guatemala! Charles and I just finished assembling and packing up the Parrot devices that we will be bringing down to the clinic in San Antonio, Guatemala. Partners in Development (PID) has already spread the word throughout the community that we will be visiting, and a medical clinic will be set up between March 1st and the 8th, so everyone in need of general healthcare can come to the clinic.Continue Reading


Have a Million Dollar Idea?

Have a million dollar idea? You can now get an opportunity to turn that idea into a reality through UConn’s Innovation Quest (iQ) competition. On February 16th the first iQ seminar kicked off and the attendance was bigger than we’ve ever seen. Students interested in joining still can as there are two iQ workshop seminars left on March 9th and March 23rd before a final application is due on March 30th. In these workshops students are able to learn tips on starting a business. They focus on key entrepreneurial skills that allow students to develop their ideas and think about the future of their product.  There are also a number of experienced entrepreneurs that act as personal mentors to students.Continue Reading


UConn’s New Parrot Device Start Up

How can you get illiterate people to follow written prescription directions? That’s the big question I tried answering after returning from Ghana in May 2013. After working in a medical clinic for a week, our team noticed that patients were not following their dosage instructions. The illiterate patients couldn’t read the medication labels we were giving them. Since they couldn’t understand these labels, the patients were Continue Reading