TechArb, the University of Michigan Student Venture Accelerator, kicked off its summer program on June 6th with four new companies. Representing a range of sectors and fields of study, the teams were handpicked for their commitment to their chosen cause and the promise they’ve already shown in carrying it forward.
Some of you may have caught their debut at this year’s Ann Arbor Tech Trek. They have spent the past month focusing on customer discovery and getting to know the Ann Arbor tech and entrepreneurial community and will spend the next two doing a deep dive into design and development, marketing and branding, and legal and finance. All their hard work will be on display at TechArb’s Demo Day on August 31st (mark your calendars!), an opportunity to celebrate the progress made and share it with family, friends, mentors and all other supporters they’ve had along the way.
We’ve had a blast getting to know them so far, and we hope you’ll have the chance to connect as well!
Caravan- Caravan improves mobility for people with limited access to transportation by coordinating shared trips to and from nonprofit programming. By ensuring access to nonprofit programs, residents can connect with their community and learn the skills provided by nonprofits to live economically successful and healthy lives. This team of go-getters consists of Kenny Fennell (MPP), Benjamin Morse (MPP/MS), Claire Koo (MSI), Tarlie Townsend (PhD), Sneha Joshi (MSI), Shakila Khan (BSE).
Dear Black Women- Dear Black Women is an affirmation movement and social network for Black women. It is powered by the words, stories, expertise, and community building of Black women across the country. This social startup is the brainchild of Florence Noel (MBA/MSI).
Infinity- Infinity combats labor fatigue by creating an affordable, light, and robust exoskeleton that lends lower body support to workers in the manufacturing industry. By mitigating lower back pain, which is one of the leading causes of labor absenteeism, Infinity increases productivity, improves employee morale, and reduces medical compensation costs within the organizations they serve. The engineers at work here are Dieon Roger (ME), Anant Bhamri (MSE), Agarshna Murari Muthukannapiran (ME), Aman Kumar Jha (MSE), and Sriram Vasu (ME).
Hot Spot- Hot Spot is developing proprietary methods to incorporate smart materials in products that will ultimately reduce the incidence of ulcer development in patient populations. Through color-changing, temperature-sensitive clothing, Hot Spot products can alert patients to at-risk areas of their body that would otherwise go unnoticed. The smart Material Science Engineers behind this venture are Azia Harris-Martin (BSE), Rowena Ng (BSE), and Joey Fici (BSE).
TechArb, the University of Michigan student venture accelerator, empowers students to bring their ideas to life through an intensive hands-on experience. Portfolio companies receive exclusive access to expert mentors, tailored programming, material support, dedicated workspace, and — perhaps most importantly — a community of like-minded, high-achieving peers. Sponsored by the Center for Entrepreneurship, the Zell Lurie Institute, the University of Michigan Office of Research and Provost’s Office, the program connects participants to the resources and support of entrepreneurial partners across campus and beyond.