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MEng Student Team Wins Kravis Concept Plan Competition

A team of four Keck Graduate Institute (KGI) students from the Master of Engineering (MEng) program earned first place in the Kravis Concept Plan Competition held on Saturday, April 22.

The annual contest for aspiring entrepreneurs is hosted by Claremont Graduate University’s Drucker School of Management. It is a competition among students and alumni of The Claremont Colleges.

This year’s winning team from KGI consisted of Brent Chamberlain, Brian Song, Heather Leu, and Evelyn Tran, all four of whom are participating in KGI’s 16th Annual Commencement on May 13.

“The competition allowed us to showcase the broad skill set we have learned at KGI,” Chamberlain said “It was really exciting to be able to apply these skills and demonstrate our strong grasp of technical and business topics, while competing against students from the other Claremont Colleges.”

Their presentation introduced the device MagStrong, which offers mechanical yield strength similar to bone and can degrade completely and safely in the body.

The judges provided valuable clarifications and input to point out important aspects to the concept plan.

Song said: “Even more valuable was insistence for us to think bigger, both in the scope of our project and with our own expectations as entrepreneurs.”

Each KGI student on the winning team played key roles in the preparation leading up to the competition. Leu conducted interviews, read through the product’s scientific papers, and contributed to the 50-page business plan. Chamberlain and Song focused on the financial portion and helped with the business plan. Tran’s work involved interviewing physicians and healthcare professionals to determine market sizing and which customers to target.

Ross Steinberg, a first-year Master of Business and Science (MBS) student, earned a second-place finish for his presentation on KetoEndure. An exogenous ketone-based sports drink, Keto Endure will provide improved sustained energy without the detriment of insulin spikes.

“I tried to highlight the value proposition of my project, the market that it would target, and the milestones necessary for success,” Steinberg said. “If I receive positive results from my proof of concept study, I intend to use the judges’ advice in preparing for real-world presentations, and hope to gain funding and grow Keto Endure as a product and brand.”

Other winners from KGI include: Chi-Chi Wachuku, Emily Shen, and Chamberlain receiving the third-place honor, and Duke Shen, Tran, and Leu taking fifth place.