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2012 D.E. Crow Innovation Prize winners announced

The D. E. Crow Innovation Prize will be launching its third annual competition to encourage and reward creative ideas and entrepreneurship by UConn students.  This is a great opportunity for you to bring your unique and innovative ideas for development of new technologies, products or processes for recognition, funding and support in commercialization.  This program, which was launched in the Mechanical Engineering with generous support from Dr. Crow, has been expanded to the entire School of Engineering.

  • A prize pool of $20,000 is available to be awarded to one or more winning teams
  • $10,000 of prize money will be available to those innovation teams which include at least one Mechanical Engineering student.
  • $10,000 of prize money will be available to those teams that include engineering students from other departments.
  • All teams may include student participation from across the university. Teams are encouraged to include at least one member pursuing a Business degree.
  • An individual cannot receive the award more than once; however, a group of individuals with new innovative ideas can receive the award more than once.
  • To apply, submit a letter of Intent (LOI) summarizing the concept for the invention/innovation and listing all team members and their affiliation by March 15, 2013, 5 PM.  All LOIs should be submitted by email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • All applicant teams will be invited to participate in an informational session on the Crow Prize on March 27, 2013 at 3 PM in UTEB 476.  
  • Teams will make 7 minute presentations on their invention/innovation, commercialization concepts and business prospects to a panel of judges in early May (date to be announced) at an Innovation Forum and the winning teams will be announced shortly after.
  • Use of a prototype in the presentation is encouraged where possible.
  • The prize money is to support the activities that lead to bringing invention to the marketplace.
  • Teaming with Connecticut companies as well as UConn incubator businesses are encouraged.
  • Selected teams will receive assistance from the UConn Office of Economic Development and the School of Engineering to further pursue their commercialization plans


Evaluation Criteria    


Purpose of the presentations limited to 7 minutes each:

Get your audience / judges excited enough -- so they will want another meeting with you to learn more about your new venture.


Groups will be judged on:

  1. Originality, practicality and innovative nature of the Concept / Product / Process and how it will help society and the world
    • Quality of Engineering Design and Analysis
    • Get your audience / judges excited enough -- so they will want another meeting with you to learn more about your new venture.

  2. Quality of Presentation of the proposed Concept/Product/Process
    • Clarity of speech
    • Clear description of business concept
    • Organization of ideas
    • Sense of Energy & Enthusiasm
    • Professionalism
    • Language

  3. Quality of business and marketing aspects of the Concept/Product/Process
    • Innovativeness of the business concept
    • Need in the Market
    • Size of Market
    • Customer pain points addressed
    • Viability of this idea as a business

  4. Future Potential: Consider the future potential of the business in terms of
    • Revenue growth
    • Returns to investors
    • Probability of and exit

Should NOT BE on:

  • Capital you might be seeking or
  • Your detailed contact information


  • Scoring sheet assessing above areas.
  • Convey Feedback to each company / participants personally.

Useful Links



Department of Mechanical Engineering
The University of Connecticut
191 Auditorium Road, Unit 3139
Storrs, CT 06269-3139
Phone: (860) 486-2090, Fax: (860) 486-5088