The Maine Edge reported on the third Big Gig pitch-off and networking event held at Husson University’s Richard E. Dyke Center for Family Business in Bangor. The Big Gig is a network for innovators and entrepreneurs in the Orono, Old Town and Bangor areas that was started by a partnership between the University of Maine, Old Town, Orono and Husson University and is supported by Blackstone Accelerates Growth. Jesse Moriarity, coordinator of UMaine’s Foster Center for Student Innovation, said one of the reasons the Big Gig was started was to connect innovators and entrepreneurs. Event participants were preselected to deliver a three-minute elevator pitch about their business idea to a panel of judges and attendees. The winner moves on to compete for the $1,000 grand prize in the Big Gig finale in April.
Jake Ward, University of Maine’s vice president for innovation and economic development, was mentioned in a Free Press article on the recent findings of an independent analysis on economic development investments in the state. The reports were compiled by Investment Consulting Associates (ICA) and include recommendations to improve the evaluation process and information on which programs provide a good return on investment. Ward was part of a steering committee of people from private and public sectors in Maine that worked with ICA on the project.
WVII (Channel 7) reported on the third Big Gig pitch-off and networking event held at Husson University’s Richard E. Dyke Center for Family Business in Bangor. The Big Gig is a network for innovators and entrepreneurs in the Orono, Old Town and Bangor areas that was started by a partnership between the University of Maine, Old Town, Orono and Husson University and is supported by Blackstone Accelerates Growth. Three participants were preselected to deliver a three-minute elevator pitch about their business idea to a panel of judges and attendees. The winner moves on to complete for the $1,000 grand prize in the Big Gig finale in April.
A team of researchers from the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center won the Best Paper Award from the Society of Naval Architects & Marine Engineers at the 19th Offshore Symposium, Feb. 6 in Houston. The paper, “VolturnUS 1:8 — Design and Testing of the First Grid-Connected Offshore Wind Turbine in the U.S.A.,” was written by Anthony Viselli, Habib Dagher and Andrew Goupee, and outlines UMaine’s design, fabrication, deployment and testing of the prototype, deployed in June 2013 off Castine, Maine. The prototype serves to de-risk the technology as it transitions to a commercial project planned for 2017.
Lenard Kaye, director of the University of Maine Center on Aging and professor in the UMaine School of Social Work, spoke with Mainebiz about UMaine’s effort to apply engineering to aging for an article about Maine retirees rejoining the workforce. Kaye said the initiative follows the example of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s AgeLab, which is engineering products that could improve and extend the quality of life for seniors. The UMaine initiative aims to allow seniors to remain in their homes or at work longer, and even inspire them to start their own business or return to the workforce.
The Maine Public Broadcasting Network spoke with Bob Bayer, executive director of the Lobster Institute at the University of Maine, for a report titled “Weak Canadian ‘Loonie’ worries Maine retailers.” Bayer said cheaper Canadian goods currently aren’t making a difference for Maine’s live lobster market, but he predicts there could be an effect on processed lobster this summer. He said Maine has fewer processing facilities than Canada and a weaker Canadian dollar allowing for cheaper workers could worsen the situation for Maine.
Michelle Hale of Bangor has been named project leader of Maine Career Connect, a Bangor-based nonprofit program of the University of Maine Rising Tide Center.
Maine Career Connect, funded by a $284,093 grant from the National Science Foundation, will work to network a consortium of employers in central and eastern Maine with newly relocated professional families, with an emphasis on spousal employment.
Hale has a decade of experience in nonprofit work, most recently with United Way of Eastern Maine, where she coordinated local community initiatives. She has a bachelor’s degree in social work and is completing a graduate certificate in business at the University of Maine. Hale also is a participant in the 2014 Bangor Region Leadership Institute.
Maine Career Connect will work with newly relocating professionals and employers of the region to ensure successful integration into the community. Dual career spouses will have access to high-level professional networking with employers that align with their professions in an effort to accelerate their job search process.
Professionals will receive networking assistance, both in seeking employment and also building social connections. Customized portfolios of vetted local resources will be offered to help families meet their particular needs outside the workplace.
The program, based on an innovative model adopted by Tech Valley Connect in Troy, N.Y., will benefit the region by helping to attract and retain talented professionals in a variety of fields.
For more information on Maine Career Connect, call 949.0098.
Contact: Michelle Hale, 207.949.0098; Margaret Nagle, 207.581.3745
The Morning Sentinel cited research from the Lobster Institute at the University of Maine for an article about a proposed bill designed to protect Maine’s lobster industry by banning two pesticides that have been partially blamed for hurting lobster populations in New York and Connecticut. According to research from the Lobster Institute, the lobster industry pumps $1.7 billion into Maine’s economy.
Growing Produce cited a Bangor Daily News article on the introduction of two new potato varieties developed by the Maine Potato Board in partnership with the University of Maine. The new varieties — the Easton and the Sebec — were developed over the past several growing seasons and are targeted for the french fry and potato chip industries, although both can be used for fresh market consumption.
WABI (Channel 5) and The Maine Edge reported on a recent announcement by the Maine Potato Board introducing two varieties of potatoes developed by the board in partnership with the University of Maine. The new varieties — the Easton and the Sebec — were developed over the past several growing seasons and are targeted for the french fry and potato chip industries, although both can be used for fresh market consumption.