Click on the picture above or the link below to find out more about the 2023 InVenture Prize competition! Relive all the exciting moments by watching the recorded broadcast. Click on each team name to learn more about the competitors and their inventions

Competing Teams

SellRaze

2 team members
1st Place
Jeff Mao
Computer Science
Suwanee, GA
Tyler Ma
Computer Science
Lawrenceville, GA

We are an online platform that makes it easy for sellers to manage their e-commerce stores across multiple marketplaces by providing tools for inventory management, order fulfillment, and sales analytics.

Winning the InVenture Prize would be a game-changer for our startup, as it would provide us with the resources and recognition we need to scale our product and reach more online sellers. This would enable us to help more businesses save time and money, which is the driving force behind our mission. Moreover, winning the prize would be a major milestone in our journey as entrepreneurs, inspiring us to continue pushing forward and making a positive impact in the world.

Novela Lamp

1 team member
People's Choice
Julia Pina
Industrial Design
Atlanta, GA

The Novela Light is an interactive shadow puppet lamp that allows children to tell stories using puppets and scenes, promoting imaginative play and fostering the development of their communication skills through creative expression.

By winning the Inventure Prize, Novela Lamps would be one step closer to being played with in homes worldwide, providing a fun and unplugged activity for parents to spend quality time with their children while encouraging creativity and imagination in the next generation of inventors, storytellers, and designers.

Gigsurf

1 team member
Syaam Khandaker
Computer Science
Springfield, Virginia

We help small/mid sized companies fulfill their need for on-demand staffing by connecting them with Georgia Tech’s top talent for contract work.

Winning the Georgia Tech Inventure Prize will bring our platform business recognition and visibility among the current students and businesses connected to the institute. This recognition will have a positive impact on the Georgia Tech community by exposing more students to our platform and getting access to more work opportunities, and by attracting more businesses to our platform, allowing them to tap into the talented pool of students at Georgia Tech.

Raccoon Eyes

5 team members
Abhipsa Ujwal
Computer Engineering
Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
Bowen Tan
Computer Science
Beijing, China
Phuc Truong
Electrical Engineering
Warner Robins, GA
Ivan Zou
Computer Engineering
Grafton, MA
Nathanael Koh
Computer Engineering
Crystal Lake, IL

Raccoon Eyes is a trash can extension that asks for student feedback and tracks food waste to improve experience, reduce food waste, and increase sustainability.

Winning the InVenture Prize would propel our team to be at the forefront of the movement to reduce food waste by transforming each cafeteria and dining hall across the nation. It would not only bring recognition and support but also the opportunity to make a significant impact on reducing food waste. With this prize, we will be able to elavate students dining experience, enhance the kitchen quality and quantity of food, and change the way we look at waste. We believe that the solution for food waste is at the intersection between students and kitchens.

SpoilerALERT

3 team members
2nd Place
Mark Nissen
Biomedical Engineering
Evans, GA
Sierra Houang
Biomedical Engineering
Dallas, GA
Grady Lee
Biomedical Engineering
Cataula, GA

SpoilerALERT! is an antibody test for insulin degradation that allows diabetics to evaluate their insulin supply

We believe that diabetics deserve to have control and confidence in their insulin. Winning Inventure Prize would allow us to continue to test and develop our product so that we can improve the standard of care for diabetics across the country and around the world.

Ouro

3 team members and prototype
Jack Hutchinson
Mechanical Engineering
Suffolk, VA
Lily Szczesniak
Industrial Design
Atlanta, GA
Mitchell Henderlong
Mechanical Engineering
Madison, AL

A desktop injection molding machine that utilizes rapid, inexpensive tooling to create accessible and flexible mid scale plastic manufacturing.

Winning the Inventure Prize would validate years of hard work and development, propel decentralized and sustainable manufacturing to new heights, and affirm that the world is ready to move past manufacturing limitations that we have always accepted, and embrace the prospect of accessible, flexible, and sustainable manufacturing.

Judges

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Senior Technology Advisor for the City of Atlanta

Georgia Tech alum, Donald Beamer Jr., holds 11+ years of experience in new product introduction and strategy execution. Beamer currently serves as Atlanta’s first-ever appointed Senior Tech Advisor, as of 2022. In this position, he will work to advance Atlanta’s technology workforce in the form of existing firms and startups. Beamer is also a mentor for Techstars, a global investment business with one of the largest startup networks in the world.  

 

Beamer recently served as the General Manager of LotVision Automotive at Cox2M, a business line with Cox Communications that drives efficiencies by providing industries with the ability to monitor and track commercial assets. At Cox2M, Beamer was responsible for the strategy implementation for these tracking services and the launch of a $50 million commercial business line for Cox Communications. 

 

Prior to Cox, Beamer served as President and CFO of Monsieur, a Summer Associate at McKinsey and Company, and an Associate at Blackrock.

Duriya Farooqui headshot
Board Director of Intercontinental Hotels Group (NYSE: IHG) and Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE)

Duriya Farooqui is a board member and former C-suite leader with a proven track record of business transformation and innovation, and extensive experience guiding Fortune 500 and FTSE 100 global public companies. Farooqui has served in a variety of leadership roles, including COO for the City of Atlanta and President of Supply Chain Innovation at Georgia Pacific. Farooqui currently serves as a Board Director of Intercontinental Hotels Group (NYSE: IHG) and Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE). She also serves on the boards of the New York Stock Exchange. In addition, she co-chairs the NYSE Board Advisory Council that is committed to advancing diversity on corporate boards.

 

Farooqui is the 2021 recipient of OnBoard’s 19th annual Lettie Pate Whitehead Evans award in recognition of her transformative endeavors serving on public boards and championing diversity.

 

Most recently, Farooqui was President of Supply Chain Innovation at Georgia Pacific. In this role, Farooqui drove supply chain transformation and led a center for innovation where over 40 companies collaborated to solve supply chain challenges.

 

She earned a Bachelor of Art’s degree in Economics and Mathematics from Hampshire College and a Master of Public Administration in International Development from Harvard University.

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Senior Vice President of Veranex

Sherry Farrugia is an innovative health care and life sciences executive who excels at driving growth for new products while also creating return on investment for stakeholders.  As CEO of the Global Center for Medical Innovation (GCMI), she positioned the organization to serve industry in addition to academia, leading to the commercialization of numerous medical devices. During her tenure with GCMI she created new programs, new pricing models and new partnerships. She leveraged this success to sell GCMI, a nonprofit state/academic affiliate, to an industry partner, Veranex, thus creating a company that enhances Atlanta’s reputation as the LifeScience hub of the Southeast. She currently serves as Senior Vice President at Veranex.

Sherry is a five-time Geogia Bio Award winner including winning the coveted Industry Growth Award which is the highest award given by the State’s Life Science trade association, and recognizes individuals who’ve had the incredible impact in Georgia’s Life Sciences industry. She was also named Woman of the Year in Technology in 2018. She is sought-after speaker on the topics of medical device commercialization and creating sustainable public-partnerships designed to thrive.

She is a founding member of the International Society of for Pediatric Innovation and currently serves on their Board. Further she is a board member of Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Innovation Board.

Sherry holds a Bachelor’s of Science from Auburn University in Chemistry, and holds a Certificate in Global Innovation from Oxford.

Hosts

Ashley Mengwasser profile picture

Lifestyle Host, Writer, and Executive Producer Ashley Mengwasser is an eight-time Emmy-winning media talent. She began her 13-year career in television hosting GPB’s popular series Georgia Traveler. Travel highlights include skydiving with grandma, boxing with an Olympian, ballroom dancing, and a ghoulish zombie transformation.

This high-school Valedictorian is as brainy as she is brazen. Ashley hosts GPB Education’s ongoing Emmy-winning Live Exploration series, and creative sparks fly when she co-hosts the annual InVenture Prize at Georgia Tech.

In 2018, Ashley was handpicked for Lowe’s explosive YouTube competition “DIY-No-Mite.” She then packed a duffel bag of dog treats to film the syndicated pet travel special Pets Welcome Here with her late basset hound Rosie “co-hosting.”

Ashley even goes “audio only” hosting the Classroom Conversations podcast series for Georgia educators, now in its third season.

Apart from hosting, her magnum opus as a writer-producer is PBS cultural documentary Chinese Tea: Elixir of the Orient. This artistic international project swept six Emmys in 2017, including Ashley’s solo Emmy for writing.

In the Atlanta community, Ashley emcees non-profit galas and has helped raise more than $300,000 to benefit women and children. Ashley graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Magna Cum Laude from Agnes Scott College in 2009 with a B.A. in English Literature.

Ashley spends non-work hours training her basset hound puppy, Starla. Starla enjoys peanut butter and sticks…but this isn’t about her.

Faith Salie headshot

Faith Salie is an Emmy-winning contributor to CBS Sunday Morning and a regular on NPR’s Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!   

She starred Off-Broadway in 2021 in her solo show, Approval Junkie, based on her memoir of the same name, after a world premiere at Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre. Approval Junkie won Audible’s Best Theatre of 2022 award and can be heard worldwide on Audible.  She hosted five seasons of PBS’s Science Goes to the Movies and is a storyteller for The Moth, with her story viewed 6 million times and included in The Moth’s New York Times bestseller, Occasional Magic

Faith hosts the podcast Real Good, amplifying the voices of people making a difference in the world.  She’s grateful she grew up in Atlanta and received her B.A. from Harvard, aka “The Georgia Tech of the North.” 

She’s a Rhodes scholar who received her MPhil in Literature from Oxford University, after which her cohort became things like 2020 presidential candidates and Pulitzer Prize winners, while she went to Hollywood and landed on a Star Trek: Deep Space Nine collectible trading card worth hundreds of cents. Faith lives in Manhattan and is raising kids who say “y’all.”