"D-Day" Arrives for BASE Student Entrepreneurs

Seven teams of student entrepreneurs will gather on the University of Minnesota campus Thursday, August 4 for “Decision
Day”, the culmination of an eight-week refinement process for tech-focused business concepts. The event is sponsored by the Business Accelerator for Student Entrepreneurs (BASE).

It’s the first student cohort from University of Minnesota’s recently-formed BASE. Each team presented their initial business proposals at a kick-off event in June. A number of mentors and local business leaders listened to the pitches and provided feedback. At the August 4 event, students will present their ideas again to the same audience, after having taken eight weeks to refine and rework their ideas.

According to BASE Director Mark Sanders, changes in the concepts are to be expected. "Some of the concepts will be modestly refined over the eight-week period," Sanders said. "Others will change quite drastically as the students
re-think their concept and maybe pivot to something better. And some might conclude that their concept just isn't viable and they should move on to something else."

Students aren’t in a competition that will name winners and losers, Sanders stressed. Rather, they’re at the end of a process to make a “Go / No-Go” decision – a determination of whether the business idea is viable enough to continue pursuing.

Sanders formed BASE after leading a similar accelerator for science and technology students at the University of Texas at Austin.

D-Day will be at the Toaster (Basement of Walter Library) from 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM. The event is open to the public. Please RSVP your attendance with the link below and plan to arrive 10-15 minutes before the event.


The seven teams pitching concepts are:
Zachary Xiong and Doug Hoang represented FemtoFluidics LLC;
OncoFluidX, represented by Biomedical Engineering Ph.D candidate Elizabeth Crist;
Gast Technology Group, represented by Glenn Toby;
Chip Specker, representing Groupit;
Erik Jamison-Ekeling, presenting The Assist;
Briana Chang, with the design for Handheld Urinal for Healthcare;
Avni Tripathi representing Theodora Pillow, LLC.