Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

AIME Day Designed to Tout New Technology by University of Alabama Teams

Newspaper article The Tuscaloosa News

AIME Day Designed to Tout New Technology by University of Alabama Teams

Article excerpt

The University of Alabama's center devoted to helping staff and students take their ideas to market will have its annual event today featuring new technologies and the UA teams behind them.

UA's Alabama Innovation and Mentoring of Entrepreneurs center will host AIME Day at the AIME building on campus from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday.

The 17 teams composed of UA faculty and students are scheduled to present or compete in the annual event. Some are competing for cash prizes or support to develop prototypes. Others will gain valuable experience and feedback as they practice using their prototypes to sell their ideas to investors.

"We are going to be highlighting university technologies and entrepreneurial students," said Rachel Frazier, AIME research engineer.

The teams, whose ideas range from software to technology with medical applications, will each give presentations that are about 10 minutes long, according to a release from UA. Seven outside entrepreneurial experts serving as judges will select winners and offer professional insight into commercial viability of the team's pitches.

The day event begins with opening remarks by Carl Pinkhert, UA vice president for research, followed by presentations throughout the day.

AIME Day marks the starting point for this year's competitors and the end point for last year's finalists, according to Frazier. The new teams are competing for support, while the past finalists are highlighting their work from the year.

The AIME center helps campus inventors and entrepreneurs commercialize their ideas. Crimson Innovation is a program for UA faculty, staff students get their ideas off the ground. Frazier described it as a vetting process for the commercial viability of the inventors' ideas. The Crimson Innovation process lasts about a year, she said.

"It's really trying to pull the technology out of the lab to the market," Frazier said.

Last year's Crimson Innovation finalists who built prototypes with the help of AIME will get a chance to display and promote their start-ups in a setting similar to conventions or trade shows where they would try to attract interest from investors or customers, said Dan Daly, AIME director. …

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