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Technology Challenge open to Trent students

Trent students have been invited to participate in the 2003 Student Technology Venture Challenge (TVC).

The TVC was started in 2000 with the intention of encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship in the student community. Entrants are asked to describe a commercial business idea related to a new technology.

The competition has a prize fund total of $20,000, with the eventual winner receiving a cash award of $10,000 and the runners-up receiving $5,000 each. The event is open to students from Trent University and a dozen other eastern Ontario universities and colleges.

The TVC takes place over three rounds. Proposals must be submitted by February 10, 2003, in order to be considered in the competition. In March, eight semi-finalists will be jury-selected from the initial pool of entrants. Each of the teams in the semi-finals will be paired with a CEO from a local company who will act as a mentor. The semi-finalists will submit a more detailed five-page proposal and, from this, judges will select the top three teams who will go on to the final round. The three finalists will present their ideas to a panel of entrepreneurs, investors and venture capitalists on May 22, 2003.

The winning teams from 2000 and 2001-02 have gone on to form successful companies. The 2000 winners, a team from Carleton University, formed Kelsar Inc., a software management company that has opened offices in both the U.S. and India. Last year’s winners formed Ellistar Sensor Systems Inc., a microwave and antenna engineering firm.

"The real gain comes from having learned so much about building a high-technology business," said Jim Pedersen, president and founder of Ellistar. "We could have been cut from the finals and still walked out with enough to launch our 2002 plan."

The TVC is a not-for-profit competition, run by volunteers from the educational and business community. It is supported by sponsors including Skypoint Capital Corporation, Royal Bank, Business Development Bank of Canada, Katsura Investments, Bedarra, and the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovation (OCRI).

For further information, and for full details about registering in the competition, visit

Posted January 8, 2003

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