TU wins top honors in Oklahoma Governor's Cup

Friday, April 19, 2013

Two teams took first place in their divisions and advance to tri-state contest.

University of Tulsa teams took top honors in both the graduate and undergraduate divisions of the 2013 Donald W. Reynolds Governor’s Cup. Winners were announced during a gala Thursday, April 18, in Oklahoma City’s Bricktown Events Center.

The Governor’s Cup collegiate business plan competition simulates the process of creating a business plan and pitching the idea to potential investors. Forty-eight student teams from 15 Oklahoma universities and colleges competed in this year’s event.

Code Sooq TU team Code Sooq won first place in the High Growth Undergraduate Division. TU teams Echocharge and Turtle One earned first and third place, respectively, in the High Growth Graduate Division.

After submitting business plans in the first round of competition, the teams advanced to the oral presentation finals on April 13. The presentations were judged by nearly 50 business leaders, investors and entrepreneurs.

By winning at the state level, Code Sooq and Echocharge move on to an oral competition that will be held in Las Vegas, Nev., May 20-22. They will face first- and second-place teams in the undergraduate and graduate divisions from Arkansas and Nevada.

EchoChargeClaire Cornell, assistant director of entrepreneurship, served as adviser for the two graduate teams, EchoCharge and Turtle One.

Under the advisement of Parameswar Harikumar, Associate Professor of Engineering Physics, Team Echocharge members Martin Green, Bingjie Ji, Reid Johnston and Katherine Sind developed a nanostructured device for extending cell phone battery life. Through nanotechnology, the group harnessed energy from the voice of the phone user and surrounding noise vibrations. The energy is recycled back to the cell phone battery, increasing its capacity up to 20 percent. The team was awarded $20,000 for its first place win.

Turtle OneNick Wood and Phoebe Hardwicke are Team Turtle One. They developed a database search technique that retrieves information and produces results five times faster than current methods. The technique is compatible with MySQL, an open source database management system.

David Greer, executive director of TU’s Institute for Information Security, is adviser for the first place undergraduate team, Code Sooq, whose members are Marla Blum, Mark Denhoed, Stephen Macke and Ahmed El-Kishky. Their web-based service connects software programmers with potential customers. This team also received $20,000 Thursday night.

The Governor’s Cup is managed by the technology company i2E Inc., and is underwritten by sponsors including the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, AT&T, Phillips66 and State Regents for Higher Education.


Gail Ellis