Entrepreneurship Tech Talk Featured Speakers from NASA, University of Oxford, Embry-Riddle

Embry-Riddle’s David B. O’Maley College of Business recently hosted an Entrepreneurship Tech Talk featuring industry leaders from across the industry. (Video: Patrick Herlehy)

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Entrepreneurship Tech Talk series, developed by Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Acting Director Ramy Rahimi, recently hosted a panel of industry experts from NASA and the University of Oxford, who spoke to students about developing innovative ideas into real-world companies.

The event served “as a platform to highlight the student-led startups that utilize NASA-developed technology,” said Rahimi, also an assistant professor of Entrepreneurship at Embry-Riddle’s David. B. O’Maley College of Business.

Embry-Riddle’s Entrepreneurship courses were developed around NASA’s faculty-led Technology Transfer Program for universities, which makes a comprehensive list of space technologies, patents and software available to students to repurpose for on-Earth solutions. The Entrepreneurship Tech Talk kicked off with presentations from student-led startups that have adopted these technologies and also featured other distinguished speakers. Those guests are listed as follows:

  • KSC’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC) Technology Transfer Program Officer, Trent Smith
  • NASA’s KSCTechnology Transfer Partnership Manager, Delvin VanNorman
  • NASA Technology Transfer Expansion (T2X) Program Coordinator, Mikaela McShane
  • CEO and Entrepreneurship Expert from the University of Oxford, Shukri Tofey
  • Griffin Lunn, inventor and subject matter expert at NASA’s KSC, and the inventor of the technology used by Medusa Filtration Systems, which competed in Embry-Riddle’s recent Launch Your Venture competition.

“This was an excellent event to showcase the talented students at Embry-Riddle,” said VanNorman“They have taken technologies out of the NASA patent portfolio and taken them beyond the classroom to start companies of their own.  It was a great experience to be able to network and interact with these young entrepreneurs.”

Left to right: Griffin Lunn, inventor and subject matter expert at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC); Delvin VanNorman, NASA’s KSC Technology Transfer partnership manager, Dr. Ramy Rahimi, acting director of Embry-Riddle’s Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship; Trent Smith, KSC’s Technology Transfer program officer; Mikaela McShane, NASA Technology Transfer expansion program coordinator; and Shurki Tofey, CEO and entrepreneurship expert, University of Oxford (Photo: Patrick Herlehy)

“I was extremely impressed by the quality of the pitches presented by the students, and I believe that many of them could develop into financially viable ventures,” Toefy added. “Sitting at the intersection of NASA’s technology, entrepreneurial acumen and the will to succeed and change the world for the better is a very exciting place.”

The student-led startups were also presented with a NASA T2U Certificate of Achievement at the event, which ended with a networking social.

“I was immensely impressed with the caliber of the students’ presentations, especially their inventive ideas and ability to tell a story and connect with the audience,” McShane said. “During the panel discussion, the students asked thoughtful questions and engaged with us in a meaningful way. I am excited to see what comes next from this program.”

Currently, Embry-Riddle students Maricarin Minnock, from Guardian Structural Health, and Logan Cicala, from Reboot Refinery, are participating in the NASA Accelerator Summer Program in collaboration with Virginia Tech through the Tech Center Science & Technology Accelerator Network Program.

Students Alex Britton and Elias Campbell, both from CerebriTech, are participating in the Embry-Riddle/Volusia Country Accelerator Program, hosted at the Embry-Riddle MicaPlex.

The student-led startups currently repurposing NASA-developed technology at Embry-Riddle include:

  • Guardian Structural Health / Maricarin Minnock, CEO
  • Medusa Filtration Systems / Nicholas Heath, CEO
  • CerebriTech / Alex Britton, CEO, and Elias Campbell, CFO
  • Reboot Refinery / Logan Cicala, CEO

Watch the full panel discussion on YouTube. Video of the student-led presentations is also available.