CSU Demo Day 2022 celebrates innovation and entrepreneurship

Demo Day screen shot

Story by Sarah Hibbs-Shipp

Colorado State University students, faculty and staff presented their innovative work at CSU Demo Day April 18-20, competing for over $20,000 in cash awards.

Participants represented seven CSU Fort Collins colleges and showcased two submissions from the Institute for Cannabis Research at CSU-Pueblo. Each presenter prerecorded a 30-second introduction and a three-minute talk for the virtual audience and included a digital poster on the custom poster showcase platform. Presenters with a technology that could be demonstrated had the option to upload a five-minute demonstration video of their innovation.

Lunch seminars

This year’s event included three lunchtime seminars:

Technology Transfer and the Land-Grant Mission: Engaging in a Culture of Innovation at CSU. Panel members included Vice President for Strategy Jenelle Beavers, Vice President for Research Alan Rudolph, Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs Susan James and Vice President for Technology Transfer Richard Magid.

Innovation at CSU Spur. Panel members included Associate Vice President for Spur Strategy James Bradeen, College of Agricultural Sciences Chief of Staff and Operations Paula Mills, Professor and Animal Sciences Department Head Keith Belk and Professor Gregory Graff of the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.

Front Range Innovation & Entrepreneurship Resources. Panel members included Colorado BioScience Association President Elyse Blazevich, Innosphere Ventures Executive Director Ben Walker, Energy Institute Associate Director Jeff Muhs, Assistant Vice President for Strategy and Executive Director of the Institute for Entrepreneurship Scott Shrake and Meghan Suter, director of the Research Acceleration Office.

Demo Day posters

In-person awards ceremony

Winners were announced at an in-person event on Wednesday evening, in a joint ceremony with the Institute for Entrepreneurship’s Venture RAMS Business Showcase. The collaboration was held at the Translational Medicine Institute and included a 45-minute networking session where the Pitch Competition teams and Demo Day participants networked with community members and judges. The Institute then showcased the seven finalists with live pitches and Q&A from the judges, followed by the awards ceremony highlighting Demo Day winners and Business Showcase awards.

All community members are encouraged to join the Demo Day community and check out the innovative work at demoday2022.csuinnovates.org. The platform will be available for a full year after the event – open to continued networking and viewing of the innovative content.

CSU Demo Day was made possible this year with the time and generous support of sponsors, CSU leadership, industry judges and the faculty, students and staff that make the event successful.

Demo Day screen shot

The awards

The winners are listed below:

Excellence in Innovation – CSU Pueblo ($1500):
Inhibitory Effects of Hemp-fiber-blended Toothpaste on the Colonization of Oral Bacteria
Sanghyuck Park, College of Natural Sciences, CSU Pueblo
Institute of Cannabis Research

CSU (Fort Collins) College-Specific Awards ($1500 each)

Innovation in Agricultural Sciences
A sustainable solution to protect the century-old tradition of Colorado peaches from replant disease
Derek Newberger, Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture
Advisor: Jorge Vivanco

Demo Day screen shotInnovation in Engineering:
Rapid and Energy-Efficient 3D Printing of Carbon Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Composites
Carter Dojan, School of Advanced Materials Discovery
Advisor: Mostafa Yourdkhani

Innovation in Health & Human Sciences
CSU Architectural Virtual Library
Sara Bovaird, Department of Design and Merchandising
Advisor: Maria Delgado

Innovation in Liberal Arts
Weather Water Watts
Diego Pons, Department of Anthropology & Geography
Climate Change Adaptation Lab

Innovation in Natural Sciences
Rapid and Sensitive Diagnostic Device for Covid-19
Melissa Schenkel, Department of Chemistry
Advisor: Alan Kennan

Innovation in Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences
Managing Non-Pregnant Cows Earlier: Got OCT?
Carolina Gonzalez-Berrios, Department of Biomedical Sciences
Advisor: Thomas Hansen

The Institute for Entrepreneurship Game Changer Award
Boomers Custom Hearing Solutions
Joel Helbling, Brian Macke, Greg Fleck, and Andy Flick

Demo Day posters

CSU (Fort Collins) Specialty Awards

Innovation in Augmented or Virtual Reality ($1500)
Designing Affordable Tiny Homes on Wheels (THOWs) that Support Aging in Place
Rebecca Graese, Department of Design and Merchandising, College of Health & Human Sciences
Advisor: Maria Delgado

Innovation in Software ($1500)
System for grocery shopping recommendations based on one’s health profile
Moe Huss, Department of Systems Engineering
Advisors: Daniel Herber and Mike Borky

Excellence in Interdisciplinary Human-Centered Design Thinking ($1500)
Not a Drop to Drink: Safer Water Sources Through Accessible Point-of-Need Bacterial Testing
Jason Boes, Department of Chemistry, College of Natural Sciences
Advisor: Alan Kennan

Innovation in Programmatic or Educational Outreach ($1500)
Reviving Rural Communities with User-Centered Design & Virtual Reality
Cynthia Urresti, Department of Design and Merchandising, College of Health and Human Sciences
Advisors: Maria Delgado, Jenna Vigil, Jeremy Johnston

Excellence in Energy (2 awards)
First Place ($500):  Light Driven Chemistry as a Synthetic Tool for a Greener Future
Alex Green, Department of Chemistry, College of Natural Sciences
Advisor: Garret Miyake

Second Place ($300):  Rapid and Sustainable Manufacture of Smart Composites
Iman Naseri, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Walter Scott, Jr., College of Engineering
Advisor: Mostafa Yourdkhani

People’s Choice (2 awards)
First Place ($500): Probiotics as Vaccines: Increasing Protection at the Site of Infection
Benjamin Swartzwelter, Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

Second Place ($250): Discovering de-novo stable organic radicals for aqueous redox flow batteries
Shree Sowndarya Santhanalakkshmi Vejaykummar, Department of Chemistry, College of Natural Sciences
Advisor: Robert Paton