Transforming invention to innovation

Graduate Certificate in Science & Technology Commercialization

i2I Venture Pitch

On October 20, 2021, the Chang Institute at SFU and the Beedie School of Business will host the 6th annual i2I Venture Pitch Competition which gives scientists the opportunity to grow into more business-savvy scientist-entrepreneurs to attract investors, commercialize their inventions, and sell the value of their products or services.

At this event, qualifying students pitch their product-ready or emergent venture to a panel of judges comprised of angel investors, IP experts and successful serial entrepreneurs for their chance at winning cash prizes.

Date: Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Time: 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Location: This event will be offered virtually and there may be potential for an in-person component.

Registration: Attendance is complimentary, but registration is required. Please reserve your spot by registering online.

Dr. Macarena Cataldo


Viridis Research Inc. - Our ground-breaking electrochemical technology is not just one product. We develop a core architecture to electrochemically treat a vast range of water contaminants such as polymers, microplastics, biofilms, and persistent organics.


CEO of Viridis and chemical engineer with a Ph.D. in Electrochemical Water Treatment from the Turin Polytechnic University in Italy. Macarena is an internationally recognized water treatment scientist with more than 12 years of experience working on drinking and wastewater treatment projects for organizations, such as the Metropolitan Water Company of Turin (SMAT), the European Space Agency, and Reseau WaterNet.

Dr. Tan Nguyen


GelPower is the least expensive and low toxic rechargeable battery - a solution for grid-scale energy storage application.


Tan Nguyen has strong analysis, evaluation, communication, creativity, and decision-making skill with over five years of experience in electrochemistry and two years in the battery and energy storage area. He has a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering and is the lead researcher of the battery project at Molecular Mechatronics Lab at UBC. He has a strong passion for sustainable energy and is currently developing the least expensive and low toxic rechargeable battery that he believes will be a game-changer in battery technology for grid-scale energy storage applications.

Mr. Justin Wyss


SomaSense is a soft flexible and stretchable pressure sensor array designed for pressure ulcer prevention.


Justin Wyss is a PhD student in Biomedical Engineering at The University of British Columbia (UBC). Originally from Zürich, Switzerland, he conducts research in the Molecular Mechatronics Laboratory at UBC and at the International Collaboration on Repair Discoveries (ICORD) in Vancouver. His expertise lies in soft sensors, flexible electronics, electroactive polymers and near-infrared spectroscopy. His research focuses on the development of novel prevention and rehabilitation technologies in healthcare.

Dr. Mirjam Mai


Fibrilex is an improved sand upgrading technology that makes the use of nonstandard sand in concrete more user friendly.


Dr. Mirjam Mai wants to change the sand and concrete industry for the better. Mirjam wanted to find a solution of sand overexploitation and the devastating impacts on beaches, riverbanks, humans, and wildlife that could be easily applied and widely used. With her chemistry and product development background honed in various biomaterial projects, she improved an existing technology that creates alternative sand sources for concrete.

Mr. Eric Cheng


Isolatrix is a bench-top instrument which leverages deep learning for performing highly precise single cell isolation for enabling next generation whole genome sequencing applications.


Eric Cheng is a PhD candidate in Electrical Engineering at UBC. He is passionate about bringing cutting edge techniques in microfluidics and machine learning to solve challenging life science problems. He received his Master of Applied Science degree in Biomedical Engineering from UBC in 2015, studying complex hydrodynamics within inkjet systems for cell printing applications. Prior to returning to graduate studies, he was a former Senior Scientist at Scienion AG where he invented the CellenOne, their single cell solution currently in use globally.

Dr. Tong Li


Poly V. Technology Inc. is a game-changing polymer material that is lighter, stronger, and greener and it can help reduce 20% of vehicle weight and 40% of CO2 emission.


Dr. Tong Li is a polymer chemist, an engineer, and a trained entrepreneur. She has a Ph.D. in chemistry from University of Victoria and a Master of Science in polymer engineering from the University of Akron. She works as a post-doctoral fellow at electrical and computer engineering department in University of British Columbia. As a material innovator with 8 years of experience, she is passionate about developing technology that will benefit human society.

Jack Chang

Jack Chang

Jack is a partner of Fort Capital Partners, an investment bank providing entrepreneurs with M&A advisory and capital raising services. Fort has been involved in over 45 transactions, advising on over $35B of M&A and $1.3B of equity financing.

Jack specializes in climate tech, with a wide experience of advising companies at various stages of commercialization, from pilot to revenue, and with various sector areas, including energy storage, hydrogen technologies, carbon capture, specialty chemicals, agtech, building tech, and batteries.

Before Fort, he worked in the financial services industry, including commercial banking and investment management, and subsequently formed an independent corporate finance practice advising companies seeking financing and strategic partnerships.

A proud alumnus of SFU ~ Class of BBA 2004!

Karima Bawa

Karima Bawa is the CEO for 3D Bridge Solutions. She is also a Senior Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation, a Technical Committee Expert (IP Management Standard Committee (ISO 5050)), a member of the Board of Directors for the College of Patent Agents and Trademark Agents and the Board of Directors for Sierra Wireless. She is the former general counsel and chief legal officer for Research In Motion Limited (now BlackBerry) where she oversaw a global legal team and managed the global legal function and the company's vast IP portfolio. In addition to her work at CIGI and on various boards, she is also involved with advising and supporting technology start-ups. Karima holds a Bachelor of Science, a Bachelor of Law and a Masters in Business Administration.

Dr. Kausar Samli

Dr. Kausar Samli is an applied-technologies commercialization executive. His engagements include securing, approving, and deploying $100M+ in capital, and demonstrating significant stakeholder value generation across industries (including bio, quantum, and blockchain), non-profit organizations, and academia. As a thought-leader, internationalist, and entrepreneur he leads and advises executives, investors, and institutions on strategy, technology commercialization, organizational development, and building ecosystems. In service to communities, he is an Expert for Horizon Europe (previously Horizon 2020) for the European Commission, an Investigator for Creative Destruction Lab (Vancouver), an Ignite Review Panelist for Innovate BC, and a member of Singularity University’s Faculty. He serves as a Director on the Boards of Genome BC, Lectenz Bio, and Women@TheFrontier.

Dr. Anat Feldman

Anat Feldman, PhD, MBA, CCRP, is a Beedie graduate from the i2i and MOT-MBA programs. Since 2018, as a Senior Business Development Officer at STEMCELL Technologies, Anat has been responsible for supporting business development at STEMCELL. In this role, she negotiated several types of business transactions with customers, service partners and suppliers. She held a critical role in the license of new technologies commercialized by STEMCELL and in the continuity of supply of critical raw materials.

Prior to this opportunity, Anat worked at the Fraser Health Authority and was responsible for supporting the implementation of clinical trials. She negotiated hundreds of clinical trial agreements with pharmaceutical companies on behalf of Fraser Health.

Anat is a Clinical Research Certified Professional (by and has a PhD in Biochemistry from Simon Fraser University. She was awarded a Fellowship from the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for her Post-Doctoral training.

Dr. Rahul Singh

Rahul is a biotech professional working as a Senior Sector Manager in the Agrifood and Natural Resources group at Genome British Columbia. An alumnus of the i2I program, Rahul holds a PhD in Microbiology and over 15 years of experience in research, mentorship, building strategic partnerships, business development, and project management. Using this experience and expertise in genomics and biological engineering, he passionately supports innovation and commercialization of clean and sustainable biotechnologies to address the challenges posed by climate change, and for a sustainable circular bioeconomy. He actively supports and work with inventors, end-users (government and industry) and stakeholders in driving the innovation cycle for socio-economic benefits. A strong believer in Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, he actively supports means to incorporate these in our social structures.

Sponsored by:

The i2I program is perfect for people like me who are deeply involved in science, and who want to look for opportunities in the business world. A program like this opens your mind and teaches you that there is another world of possibilities outside of the lab.

Elena Groppa, i2I

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Faculty of Medicine

University of British Columbia Biomedical Research Centre

My key lessons from the program were learning how to effectively frame and structure a problem or situation, manage a tight schedule, know what to prioritize and how to prioritize it, and identify core problems quickly and addressing them.

Bobbie Dhillon, EMBA

Senior Vice President, Marketing & Planning

G&F Financial Group

The comprehensive simulations provided the greatest learning for me. They helped change my mindset and connect the different areas of learning into a comprehensive view of how an organization runs.

Matthew Grunert, MOT MBA

Sr. Director, Digital Operations & IT

Motorola Solutions

The MSc Finance program gave me the technical foundation that I couldn’t function without. I work with clients in very senior roles, and it’s important to demonstrate your technical knowledge to gain their trust.

Christine Jakshoej, MScFin

Head of Professional Services America


The immediate impact of the GDBA has been a change in the way I approach my day professionally. I am equipped to make better decisions. My confidence level has been elevated significantly, and I am enjoying a new sense of optimism in my career.

Percival Chang, GDBA

Manager & Investment Funds Advisor

PH&N Investment Services

I always saw myself working beyond clinical pharmacy. I felt that I could also shine on the business side of healthcare. I knew that with my strong clinical training an MBA would help open more doors and give me the mobility I was looking for in my career.

Morenike Akinyemi, FT MBA

Senior Project Manager, Transformation Delivery

Provincial Health Services Authority

The Part-Time MBA was excellent. It gave me exactly what I expected to receive, and I think that is the highest compliment you can pay a program. It met all my expectations and provided a solid grounding in business skills and strategies.

Oliver Zihlmann, PT MBA

Director of Development and Alumni Engagement

UBC Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences

The learners I work with are 95% Indigenous, and I find that they become more interested and retain information more, when we speak and learn from an Indigenous lens. The Indigenous content integrated into the program has been very beneficial to me in terms of how I can incorporate Indigenous information into the curriculum I currently teach.

Wanda Rockthunder, EMBA IBL

Business Instructor, Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies

Cree, a citizen of the Muskowekwan First Nation, Saskatchewan

i2I: Elena

EMBA: Bobbie


MSc Fin: Christine

GDBA: Percival

FT MBA: Morenike

PT MBA: Oliver


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Our admissions team is more than happy to answer your questions so you know what you can expect before, during, and beyond your program.

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