COVID-19 UPDATE

University of Southampton

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At the University of Southampton, the Student Enterprise Team (based in the Careers and Employability Service), Future Worlds (the on-campus start-up accelerator, based within the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences) and the University’s Social Impact Lab have come together to offer the SEED Start-Up Funding Competition.

The competition is exclusive to University of Southampton students and supports them in the creation and development of early stage businesses or social enterprises through the awarding of funding prizes. Students have to submit business plans and video pitches before being shortlisted to pitch in front of a panel of judges.

The Engineers in Business Competition has been integrated into the SEED Fund to engage more engineers and students with engineering-related business ideas to develop their own start-up business. Students from specific and relevant engineering modules are also able to apply via their coursework assignments, offering an innovative approach to reaching out to more students with the opportunity.
First Prize Winner: Devon Lewis, Final Year PhD Student, NeuroScience and Founder of Inpulse - £1,500 Engineers in Business Prize

Inpulse is developing smart clothing that increases strength and corrects muscle imbalances for any sport. By continuously monitoring movements of the body, Inpulse clothing can identify inefficient muscle activity and make corrections in real time without any need for user input or professional supervision.
Second Prize Winner: Til Jordan, First Year Computer Science Student and Co-Founder of Arwen - £1,000 Engineers in Business Prize

Til Jordan and Andrius Matšenas co-founded Arwin which is developing a water monitoring device that can be attached under the sink to reduce health issues while being convenient and sustainable.

Arwin says it is proven that water quality problems rise with climate change so their device will get more and more important and will have a serious impact on a global scale. The USA has more than 9 million tap water quality violations every year, specifically in places like Flint, Michigan, where drinking water pollution has affected multiple generations. Therefore, Arwin believes it is especially important to be able to warn people of any contamination in real time and in some cases alert the local authorities so they can take the appropriate measures.
Third Prize Winner: Team Eurobot-E8 - Boated2Stay (shortened to Eurobot)- Ryan Chung, Ong Joo Yuen, Peter Lappas, and Aayush Jain, Second Year Engineering Students - £500 Engineers in Business Prize

Team Eurobot produces cheap, bespoke robots for schools to encourage students to take an interest in robotics and engineering. The idea was first based on their work on the Eurobot Team Project for their University of Southampton class, Systems Design and Computing. The overall objective of this project was to ‘design, build, programme and test an autonomous mobile robot as an entry to the Eurobot 2020 competition’. The main goal was to win the UK Eurobot final, then compete in and win the Eurobot world final, but the competition was cancelled due to COVID-19. However, their innovation has been recognised with an Engineers in Business prize!

Positive Feedback

The Engineers in Business Competition prize is an incredible opportunity for our University of Southampton students. While the Engineers in Business Fund is available to all students with engineering business ideas through our SEED Fund Competition, an additional application route has been made available to engineering students from a specific module, which has encouraged much greater diversity in applications and has raised greater awareness of the opportunity. In 2020 one of our winning teams came through this route, and the two other winners had applied direct.

Sarah Rogers, Head of Student Enterprise, University of Southampton