50 on Fire
We are a Finalist!
“2,000 nominees. 200 finalists. 50 winners. Tomorrow night we’ll celebrate them all, and crown Boston’s 50 on Fire.
But what does being “on fire” mean? After sifting through the thousands of nominations from our audience, and our panel of judges carefully reviewing each and every finalist, how are the winners selected?
Being “on fire” is a combination of the concrete and the intangible. It’s proven growth, public accolades, and hard metrics of kicking ass mixed with creativity, bravery, and presence. The best way to put it is you are changing Boston for the better in ways which simply can’t be ignored.
What makes the 50 on Fire is inspired innovation, created by change makers whose accomplishments truly speak for themselves. To fully fathom what it means to be “on fire,” take a look at last winter’s 50 on Fire champs.”
We are excited for the Dec 5th celebration – it’ll be a great evening with great people.
Five Emerging Startups Funded for $23,500
Eleven interdisciplinary teams [lineup] pitched their emerging startup ideas to a panel of judges at the Pitchfest on April 9, 2013.
The following five teams generated innovative ideas, delivered solid business models, and were awarded funding from the judges:
UrbanFlex [$6,000] Zachary Jackson (Industrial Design) and Alex Schwarzkopf (Electromechanical Engineering)
CareEz [$6,000] Ciro Podany (Architecture), Walmen Dumaliang (Industrial Design), Tory Lam (Architecture), Nick Strout (Architecture), and Derek Bisson (Architecture)
.DAT [$5,000] JT White (Master of Architecture), Lucy Brown (Master of Architecture), Joseph Meucci (Master of Architecture), Samuel Walusimbi (Master of Architecture), and Grant Wilkes (Computer Science)
Trafficflux [$3,500] Matthew Michaud (Computer Science), Ben Greenier (Computer Science), and Abraham Oosten (Graphic Design, Massachusetts College of Art and Design)
FindMe [$3,000] Ben Sewards (Computer Science), Ralph Giangregorio (Computer Science), Chou Yang (Computer Science), and Chris Streeks (Computer Networking)
Judges for “Pitchfest” included Bobbie Carlton, founder of Mass Innovation Nights; Armand Milazzo, President and founder of Milazzo Enterprise, LLC; Stefania Nappi Mallett, founder of EzCatering; and Fady Saad, co-founder of e-Powerhouse.
Six Emerging Startup Ideas
Six Emerging Startup Ideas funded + recognized
53 ideas were submitted to Accelerate this semester alone! From those twelve teams pitched on Nov 14, 2013 in front of five judges to receive gap funding for their startup ideas and to get them to the next level. Teams are comprised of students from different disciplines, which typically propels ideas significantly as multiple different perspectives are considered.
Alpha Industries, Aqua Lung, Modular Branch System and Gnar Guard received gap funding, while ImpactAlert and Resistance were recognized as significant contributions to Accelerate. See more of the participating ideas here.
The five judges included Jeffrey Altschuler, founder/CEO of Altronics Manufacturing and WIT alum; Bagley Ethan, principal innovation catalyst at Constant Contact; Rick Grundy, VP/director at AVTECH Software and WIT alum; Karen Reuther, creative director and brand specialist at Cast Collective and Accelerate’s Innovator-in-Residence; and Larry Blumsack, founder of Zoka Institute and Zoka Training.
Prior to the Nov. 14 event, 15 teams had been funded through Pitchfest for a total of $78,000.
Social Innovation Lab Launch
The Social Innovation Lab [SIL] allows students to apply their product and technology innovations to problems that need to be solved, in areas that are relevant, and to impact communities and individual’s lives.
SIL is launching May 20 and is a pilot Co-op program, where five students from five different disciplines tackle five challenges. The programming, such as workshops and events, however, is open to the public and everybody is invited to get inspired, collaborate, engage, and ideate on how to change the world by addressing small and large problems with systemic reach.
Jeanne Dasaro – Innovator-in-Residence
Jeanne Dasaro has worked over the summer with our students in the Social Innovation Lab and will continue during the Fall semester for our Startup Challenge. She brings six years of experience as an entrepreneur and innovator. She is the founder of the Wonder Women of Boston network, helping women leaders, artists, and professionals of diverse backgrounds connect with and support each other. As a videographer, Dasaro developed and produced North End Stories, a chronicle of the neighborhood’s Italian heritage. She also served as co-founder of the New Prosperity Initiative (NPi), a community media organization dedicated to social justice, knowledge-sharing, and dialogue across for-profit and nonprofit sectors.
- RT @kkreuther: Must see! http://t.co/H98JmAJiuc A few reminders why we all do what we do. @WITXLR8 #makers @IfYouBuildItDoc @Cast140 12:08:12 AM March 08, 2014
- RT @GentooInc: Thank you @WITXLR8 for another great pitch night! So proud we got our start there! 02:01:16 AM March 07, 2014
- RT @GentooInc: Hmmmmm had something else to do tonight??? Oh that's right! @WITXLR8 Pitchfest! Whoop whoop! 11:58:30 PM March 06, 2014
- 36 mins until our Pitch Round! Come Join us in Willson Hall 2nd Floor! 10:54:24 PM March 06, 2014