TU teams win more than $40,000 in 2012 Governor's Cup

Friday, April 20, 2012

They placed first and second in the Graduate Division and third among Undergraduates

Student teams from The University of Tulsa were recognized as the top Graduate Division winners April 19 in the 2012 Donald W. Reynolds Governor’s Cup Collegiate Business Plan Competition.

The top three teams in each division were revealed at an awards dinner before an audience of approximately 500 people in Oklahoma City. Gov. Mary Fallin was the keynote speaker.

SpectrumFX from TU topped the Graduate Division, winning $20,000 for researching, writing and pitching a business plan for an emerging technology. The team wrote a winning business plan for a new fire suppression technology for the aviation industry.

SpectrumFX team includes team leader Amethyst Cavallaro and team members Kathryn Junk, John Galbraith and Jessica Casper. Their adviser is Claire Cornell, assistant director of TU's International Business and Entrepreneurship Institute, who received $2,000.

SpectrumFX also earned $5,000 as the winner of the Oklahoma Business Roundtable Material Sciences and Transportation category in the interview portion of the competition. The interview – in which teams sat down for one-on-one interviews with industry experts – was introduced as a new element in this year’s competition.

TU also placed second in the Graduate Division Competition, where team PsychSavvy won $10,000, and third in the Undergraduate Division, where team
SoLoKnow won $5,000. PsychSavvy team members are Robyn Undieme (team leader), Kathryn Packell and Cary Taylor. Cornell also serves as their adviser. SoLoKnow team members are Ahmed El-Kishky (team leader), Phoebe Hardwicke, Eric Kuxhausen and Jack Lestina. Professor John Hale is their adviser.

SoLoKnowGovernor’s Cup trophies were presented by Glen Johnson, chancellor of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education. SpectrumFX and PsychSavvy now advance to compete for $90,000 against teams from Arkansas and Nevada in the Tri-State Competition in May in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Governor’s Cup Competition is open to student teams from any college campus in Oklahoma. Students select a new technology or create their own, write a business plan and then pitch it to a panel of business, investment and community leaders. The competition is underwritten by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation and more than two dozen local sponsors. It is managed by i2E Inc.

“This competition grows and improves each year,” said Tom Walker, president and CEO of i2E. “The students who write and pitch the business plans and their advisers continually raise the bar in terms of the quality of their work and the business opportunities they present.”

i2E receives funding from a variety of federal, state and private sources, including the federal Economic Development Administration, Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber, City of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Presbyterian Health Foundation and Oklahoma Business Roundtable.


Mona Chamberlin