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Optics students win $10,000 prize from venture capital firm

November 11, 2013

Five current and former Optics students have won a $10,000 prize from Excell Partners, a Rochester venture capital firm, for their portable eye examining device.

They were chosen from among 13 teams at a Pre-Seed Workshop hosted recently by High Tech Rochester. The Ovitz team members are senior Felix Kim, sophomore Pedro Vallejo-Ramirez, PhD students Aizhong Zhang and Len Zheleznyak, and Samuel Steven ('13). Both Steven and Zhang are in the Technical Entrepreneurship and Management (TEAM) master’s program. This is the same plan that took first place in the Forbes entrepreneurial competition, and third place in the Mark Ain Business Model Competition this past spring. The students are now looking for NGOs who can put their device to use to benefit people in underdeveloped countries. This is a great example of Meliora --  "making the world ever better"!

Congratulations to all of them on winning this prize and the attached "chunk of money"!