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Velocity $5K winter 2023 semi-finalists announced

Over 100 applications received — a record number since in-person events resumed

Innovative student teams from Arts, Math, Science, Health and Engineering faculties are preparing to take the stage and pitch at Velocity’s $5K semi-finals for their chance to advance to the flagship finals event later this month.

After receiving a record number of applications since in-person events resumed, an experienced panel of entrepreneurs chose 28 student teams — 14 pitching each night — to compete at the semi-finals held 5:00 – 7:00 pm, March 15th and 16th at QNC 0101.

Held every term, the Velocity $5K pitch competition sees early-stage student ventures pitch live for a chance to win one of four $5,000 awards.

Each semi-finalist will have just three minutes to present their idea and convince a new panel of judges that it has potential and viability to succeed. Only then will they move on to the final round.

The top eight teams from the two rounds will return to the stage for the finals on March 30th and four teams will take home $5,000 in grant funding to help grow their ambitions and innovative business ideas.

Join us on March 15th and 16th to cheer on your UWaterloo peers.

Register to attend

Winter 2023 Finalists

Meet the teams pitching Wednesday, March 15th*

Arami Health is a platform that aims to empower black women facing fertility issues by providing them with medical resources to improve their chances of conceiving and having a healthy pregnancy.

Submitted by MBET graduate students Olajumoke Ogbeide and Ndubualu Ugwu-Chijioke, Conrad School, Faculty of Engineering is a 2nd level domain registrar making domain names more accessible.

Submitted by Bobby Zhang, computer science, Faculty of Math

Evoke hosts open source AI models through API on the cloud for devs and businesses building AI apps so they don’t have to manage complex cloud setup.

Submitted by Richard Gao, accounting and finance management undergraduate Faculty of Arts, James Jordan, software engineering undergraduate, Faculty of Engineering, and Milo Goodfellow

Foodage helps restaurants to reduce waste by predicting future demand accurately.

Submitted by Osose Itua, mechatronics engineering undergrad, Faculty of Engineering

ForestOrigin mitigates the effects of wildfires by providing real-time monitoring and early detection alerts through an Internet of Things network.

Submitted by Javier Yanes Pulido, applied mathematics and computing undergraduate, Faculty of Math

ALive leverages generative AI to improve the animation process for studios and independent creators.

Submitted by Andy Wu, undergraduate student in computational mathematics, Faculty of Math

Haystackfs offers a chrome extension/website that allows users to search and discover relevant information and the surrounding communities. It also offers discord/slack/reddit bots to create indices that capture relevant information about a community.

Submitted by Dhrumil Patel, computer science undergraduate, Faculty of Math

Jotte AI is an intuitive graph-based interface for generating long-form text using natural language processing, without the model “losing its train of thought”.

Submitted by Kevin Jiang and Thomas Enns, management engineering undergrads, Faculty of Engineering

Joyi is a psychoeducational app backed by behavioral science that aims to make mental health education an enjoyable daily habit.

Submitted by computer science undergrad Rastin Rassoli, Faculty of Math, Negar Yaghoubi and Athena Afsharian

MetaCycler has developed a range of microorganisms that can upcycle food waste into biodegradable plastics, addressing the demand for sustainable alternatives to petroleum-based plastics.

Submitted by Nicole LeBlanc, Aranksha Thakor and Eugenia Dadzie, biology PhD students in Faculty of Science, Shirley Wong, post doc in Faculty of Science, and Jonathan Parkes

Nitron is a new type of personality engine that focuses not just on dialogue and NLP – but also on user behaviour, allowing video game NPCs or personal assistants to feel more human.

Submitted by Zac Waite, Dhruv Bhatia, and Hargun Mujral, software engineering undergraduates in Faculty of Engineering

Pharmabox reduces pharmacists’ workloads, as well as patient wait times, by automating the prescription pickup process with self-serve smart lockers.

Submitted by Aliya Rajwani and Joshua Wilkinson, systems design engineering undergraduates, Faculty of Engineering

TrashTalk is a multi-stream waste bin that leverages state-of-the-art deep learning to continually detect and categorizes the type of waste a person is holding and then directs the user to dispose their waste into the appropriate inlet.

Submitted by Thanushon Sivakaran, Vrut Patel, Faisal Sabri and Eric Dao, mechatronics engineering undergraduates, Faculty of Engineering

VIZZ is a software development tool to generate interactive visualizations of code

Submitted by Jason Liu, Simon Yan, Max Zhu and Sebastian Ouslis, electrical and computer engineering undergraduates, Faculty of Engineering

Meet the teams pitching Thursday, March 16th*

AutoChef is developing a machine that can automate the assembly of food wraps (e.g. burritos, shawarmas etc.) for use in existing wrap-making restaurants to improve food safety, increase time-efficiency, and reduce cost.

Submitted by mechatronics undergrads Muhammad Khalid, Shangheethan Prabaharan, Rukshitharan Thiyagayogan, Faculty of Engineering

Crescendo is a Web3 music platform that provides a collaborative space for individual musicians to connect and create music NFTs, thereby increasing their revenue and safeguarding their copyright.

Submitted by Baichuan Zheng, computer science, Faculty of Math

Cyber Neuro is a system that integrates non-invasive brain-computer interfaces, precise motor tracking, and VR technology to revolutionize neurorehabilitation using immersive computer-generated environments and dynamic movement tasks for data-driven clinical feedback.

Submitted by biomedical engineering students Livia Murray, Joseph Mitchell and Surya Pandiaraju, and systems design engineering student Subeka Manokanthan, Faculty of Engineering

Relief Wings aims to enhance disaster response by using multi-role UAV to provide mobile network and capture real-time data in disaster-affected areas, helping to enhance communication and aid efforts.

Submitted by Mohammad Ahmed Basri, graduate student in system design engineering, and Saurav Bin Saji and Mohammed Ibrahim Shariff, graduate students in electrical and computer engineering, Faculty of Engineering

Engineering Link is a software for consulting engineers in Southern Ontario, who run their own business, that are frustrated by challenges in developing a scalable software solution for their business.

Submitted by Kade Truman, MBET graduate student, and Ethan Truman, undergraduate in civil engineering, Faculty of Engineering

Entomatia cultivates invertebrates such as mealworms, using free food waste. By turning food waste into insects, insects into serum, the serum feeds lab-grown cells to make lab-grown meat.

Submitted by Nicholas Cheng, masters of pharmacy student in Faculty of Science, Shreeja Gupta, nanoengineering undergraduate and Wafeeq Alam chemical engineering undergraduate in Faculty of Engineering, Brenda Li, financial analysis or risk management undergraduate, Faculty of Math

FueleaF aims to produce cellulosic ethanol using metabolically engineered cell strain.

Submitted by Camelia Tavakoli, public health sciences graduate student, Faculty of Health, Mohammad Zim, chemical engineering graduate student, Faculty of Engineering, and Sina Naeini, biomedical engineering alumni, Faculty of Engineering

GoHappy Club is an initiative that empowers senior citizens to lead active and fulfilling lives through live sessions, trips, and offline meetups in various cities.

Submitted by Rakshit Sharma, graduate student in electrical and computer engineering, Faculty of Engineering

Matin Nuit, helps influencers create and launch their own beauty (skincare and makeup) products.

Submitted by Matthew Chun, environmental engineering undergrad, Faculty of Engineering, and Lilly Lee

Med Melanin is a telemedicine provider exclusively for women of colour that offers culturally competent physicians and advocacy training to improve healthcare outcomes and reduce misdiagnosis rates.

Submitted by Yvonne Osagie, MBET graduate student, Conrad School

MemoryHaven preserves your digital legacy with a comprehensive solution for managing, organizing, and securing your digital assets and footprint through a personalized digital autobiography and will.

Submitted by Jordan Crowder, architecture graduate student, Faculty of Engineering, and Krish Mehta, software engineering undergraduate student, Faculty of Engineering

Milk it! has designed a device to be used by HIV-positive, breastfeeding mothers that prevents perinatal transmission by deactivating HIV with UV-C light, while preserving the taste and nutritional value of breastmilk.

Submitted by Aarzoo Chennankunnath, Camryn MacDougall, Megan Richer and Leah Veldhuis biomedical engineering undergraduate students , Faculty of Engineering

Plantal support provides items that both support and promote plant growth while minimizing the effort of plant parents

Submitted by applied math undergraduate student (Doris) Wenbo Yi, Faculty of Math

Whale Safe Fishing Gear is creating inexpensive and reliable whale safe fishing equipment that is rope-on-demand and can be easily adapted into the current routines of both lobster and crab fishers.

Submitted by Collin Bolt, Ben Beazley, Jake Chateauneuf and Syl Yoston, mechanical engineering undergraduate students, Faculty of Engineering

*Schedule is subject to change

Meet the judges

Moazam Khan, Director of Velocity Health

Eric Blondeel, CEO, and Lawrentina D’Souza, Product Manager, at Velocity company Samos.