ASU students dominate 'College Entrepreneur of the Year' competition

August 2, 2011

3 of the 5 finalists in this year’s competition are ASU Edson student companies

ASU’s Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative startup companies have dominated this year’s Entrepreneur magazine’s “College Entrepreneur of the Year” shortlist, with three of five finalists being current or past Edson winners. The winner of the competition will receive $5,000 in prize money to help develop the business, which will be presented at a prize ceremony. The winning team will announced later in 2011 and feature in the January 2012 edition of Entrepreneur magazine. Download Full Image

The three finalists from ASU are:

Boson Inc believes stereoscopic 3-D media can enhance our abilities to interact, communicate, and develop physical abilities that will benefit our current and future generations. Using gesture-based technology, interactive simulations, and supporting a unique technology platform, our versatile solutions foster exceptional products and services.

Ellens Technologies LLC is developing an iOS platform mobile application to assist veterinarians in the diagnosis of small animals by starting with a symptom and ruling out or eliminating possible causes while moving towards the root problem.

G3Box focuses on converting steel shipping containers into medical grade clinics by outfitting them with the basic components of power, ventilation, potable water, and insulation to create sustainable medical clinics that address critical health needs internationally, while contributing every seventh container as a maternity clinic to help decrease the maternal death rate throughout developing countries.

The wide variety of business models, products and services this year also highlights the wide diversity of the entrants. This is a student venture competition that sees student teams enter from all the ASU campuses, from undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students.

The winner will be decided by voting which already has begun and continues until September. To see the finalists and vote, click

"I am very honored to be selected as a finalist for Entrepreneur magazine's College Entrepreneur of 2011” said Jeremy Ellens, founder of Ellens Technologies. “We came up with the idea of a veterinary differential diagnosis application while brainstorming with our veterinary consultant, Brenda Ellens DVM January of 2011. The application market is booming and we saw this as a great opportunity to solve a problem in the veterinary field I'm very happy to have so much support behind us from both Edson and Entrepreneur magazine."

The Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative harnesses the entrepreneurial energy, excitement and creativity found in ASU’s student body. The program helps students succeed in any enterprise, large or small, for-profit or not-for-profit, domestic or global.

"When I found out we were finalists I was ecstatic, but I ultimately knew our enterprise development had reached global recognition," said Christian Stewart, co-founder of Boson Inc. "When I found out a total of three of five finalists were from ASU, it shocked me even more! The Edson Initiative and the Venture Catalyst team that runs it is a testament to the dedication that ASU has to develop successful people and businesses amongst its student population.”

The Edson Initiative funding is in addition to the office space, mentorship and training that ASU offers as part of this new venture creation competition. The program is one of the largest privately funded business plan competitions at a U.S. university. These student teams will incubate and accelerate their business ideas at SkySong, the ASU Scottsdale Innovation Center. A variety of mentors and venture acceleration services provided by the ASU Venture Catalyst team at SkySong will help catapult their ideas into reality.

“Having three finalists in this competition being recent or current Edson student startup companies is a fantastic validation of the Edson Entrepreneurship Initiative and the culture of entrepreneurship being cultivated here in ASU,” said Gordon McConnell, executive director of Venture Acceleration in ASU. “The fact that they are three very different kinds of startup companies with very different technologies highlights the range of technologies being developed by students and staff on our campuses.”

As a student entrepreneur, Orin Edson, started a boating company in his garage. The company eventually became Bayliner Marine Corporation, the world’s largest manufacturer of pleasure and luxury boats. The Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative has been made possible by a $5.4 million investment by Orin and Charlene Edson to the Arizona State University Foundation.

Gordon McConnell,
Venture Acceleration

Britt Lewis

Interim Communications Director, ASU Library

Piper Writers Studio announces fall slate of classes

August 2, 2011

Have a nearly finished novel tucked into the bottom drawer of your desk? Love to write poetry but end up disliking everything you write?

Then the Piper Writers Studio is for you! Download Full Image

The Piper Writers Studio, presented by Arizona State University’s Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing, will offer classes by noted authors, both in person and online, beginning Sept. 15.

The Fall 2011 course offerings include an eight-week session, two four-week sessions, two online sessions, and two one-day sessions.

The class schedule includes:

Eight-week session – Cost: $400 ($360 for Piper Friends):

• "Snow on the Mountain: Breathing in New Sources for Poems," Sept. 15-Nov. 3. Instructor: Gregory Donovan. Thursdays, 6-8 p.m., Piper Writers House, ASU’s Tempe campus.

In this class, Donovan will help writers “seek out new and unique sources of inspiration for your poems as well as fresh ways to tap more familiar sources.” The class will include workshop discussions of new work produced by participants, and sessions on revision.

Four-week sessions – Cost: $400 ($360 for Piper Friends if registered for Sessions I and II). Individual sessions: $250 ($225 for Piper Friends per session):

• “Word One to Done," Session I, Sept. 15-Oct. 6. Instructor: New York Times bestselling author Michael A. Stackpole. Thursdays, 6-8 p.m., Piper Writers House, ASU’s Tempe campus.

This course will be a mix of lecture and in-class exercises. The class will cover characterization, conflict, world building, plotting, outline, execution and editing. By the end of the class the student will have completed a work of fiction somewhere between 6,000 and 30,000 words in length.

• "Perfection to Collection," Session II, Oct. 13-Nov. 3. 6-8 p.m., Piper Writers House, Tempe campus. Michael A. Stackpole will explore such topics as dissecting the story, rebuilding the story, attention to detail and Internet marketing. By the end of the class the students will have everything they need to successfully publish a work to the Internet, and to build from there into a career.

Online sessions – week of Oct. 3-24. Cost: $200 ($180 for Piper Friends):

• "Four Poems in Four Weeks," taught by Eduardo Corral, the 2011 Yale Younger Poets Prize winner. The class will focus on four types of poems: praise, narrative, imitation, and elegy. Writing prompts, class discussions, and instructor feedback will guide the writing process, from drafting to revision.

• "This is the Life: Compulsive Fiction Writing," taught by Jennifer Spiegel. During the course, Spiegel will discuss some “principles” of fiction writing and the “writing life”; workshop stories; and discuss the question of “why write.”

One-day sessions, Saturday, Oct. 8. Cost: $125 ($110 for Piper Friends):

• "Memory vs. Imagination: Essential Forces in Poetry,” 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Piper Writers House, Tempe campus (lunch not included).  Poet Gregory Donovan will help participants explore “the two great powers, memory and imagination, which are always involved in writing,” and examine possibility that “greatly respecting and expanding the power of the imagination, may well be essential to the growth of a poet’s mind and work.”

• "The Art of the Very Short Story: Sudden Fiction, Flash Fiction, & Short-Shorts," 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Piper Writers House (lunch not included). Author K.L. Cook will explore the poetic techniques of compression, suggestion, and experimentation and discuss published examples of the form, and guide participants as they write short-short stories of their own in an exciting and supportive workshop environment.

• "Action is Character," 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Piper Writers House, Tempe campus (lunch not included). Mary-Rose Hayes will explore how fictional characters can be fully realized and inhabit a real world. The course is geared to all writers.

One-day sessions, Saturday, Oct. 22; Cost: $125 ($110 for Piper Friends):

• "Engaging the Reader with Fact," 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Piper Writers House, Tempe campus (lunch not included). Poet Josh Rathkamp will discuss fictional techniques and universal “fact(s)” to find new ways to engage audiences and discuss hands-on ways to employ these new techniques. Participants also will study contemporary poems and their effectiveness, and write two poems.

• "Tools for Writing Dynamic Characters," 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Piper Writers House, Tempe campus (lunch not included). Patrick Michael Finn will discuss fictional techniques to make the characters on the pages more than characters – living people the readers will know and care about.

• "Are We There Yet? Yes We Are!" 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Piper Writers House, Tempe campus (lunch not included). Mary-Rose Hayes will discuss how an author describes a place or situation with enough power and richness so readers feel they really are walking the muddy bank of a dangerous South American river; attending a funeral on a hot afternoon in Nairobi; or in Brooklyn, standing with the neighborhood busybody behind her lace-curtained window and gazing through the same pair of binoculars.

For complete descriptions of each class, instructors’ biographies, and other class information, go to or call (480) 965-6018.

Participants in all courses will be invited to an end-of-session celebration, Nov. 10, at the Piper Writers House.