Igniting Entrepreneurship of Students and Recent Alumni of Oregon Tech
Oregon Tech’s Catalyze Klamath Falls Challenge has been a huge success for student competitors and the Klamath community. Over the past three years, 15 student/alumni teams have competed for nearly $100,000 in prize money that was generously donated by Representative Whitsett, Senator Whitsett, Klamath County, City of Klamath Falls, KCEDA, Avista, the Gaucho Collective, the Herald & News, Klamath IDEA, Oregon BEST, Business Oregon, the Wendt Family Foundation, and Black Canyon Woodworks.
Catalyze Klamath Falls Challenge aims to support business ideas and/or fledgling entrepreneurial activity from any field of study that produces a new idea, product or service that could become a thriving business in Klamath Falls, and has the potential for job growth in rural Oregon.
2018 Catalyze Klamath Falls Challenge Schedule of Events:
- October 24, 2017 from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.: Catalyze Klamath Challenge IV Kick-Off Meeting. This is a hosted event at the Gaucho Collective for students, faculty, and community members to learn about the contest and begin to form teams. Gaucho Collective, 1038 Main St., Klamath Falls 97601.
- November 7, 2017: Preliminary Concept Pitch and Resource Solicitation at the Gaucho Collective.
- November 27, 2017 - Jan 12, 2018: Catalyze Team Registration Window– Final Deadline is January 12, 2018.
- January 17, 2018 from 4:30 p.m.– 5:30 p.m.: Catalyze Team Meet and Greet. This is a hosted event for all teams to meet with mentor network and learn about external resources that are available to teams. Gaucho Collective
- March 7, 2018: Annual SharkTech Venture Pitch Contest – This is the first competitive event for all student teams. (Mandatory) Contact Mark.Ahalt@oit.edu.
- April 30, 2018: Final Report Due – See details, final report submission requirements on this page.
- May 17, 2018: Catalyze Klamath Falls Challenge Contest at Oregon Tech College Union. Teams will compete in front of a panel of judges for the PRIZES! We will post a list of judges, prizes and final details when we get closer to the date. Refreshments will be served for all team members.
2017 Winning Project:
A Solar Bee Hive which allows for the temperature regulation within a hive or set of hives, in order to assist with the elimination of the varroa mite. This device uses the concept that the varroa mite cannot survive in temperatures between 104 Fahrenheit to 116.6 Fahrenheit while the hive and bees remained unharmed. Using direct solar radiation to heat the hive, the Solar Bee Hive uses a solar panel to convert solar energy into electricity in order to power heating elements placed directly into the hive. Inventor Mathias Dean is a Renewable Energy Engineering student graduating this year.
2016 Winning Team: GO Possibilities
Production of graphene oxide
Team: Matthew Stansbury, Eric Tipler, Ben Fawver, Tate Orlik Hill
2015 Winning Team: Gro-volution
Sustainable agriculture production system ("In the box farming")
Team: Eric Wilson, Derek Pallett, Nathan Leung
Winning teams will be awarded cash prizes to invest in start-up costs and ignite project development, or to share among the Team.