Texas Tech University

URC Commercialization Track

Does your Research have commercialization potential? You could win $1,500!

The Center for Transformative Undergraduate Experiences (TrUE), in partnership with Texas Tech University Innovation Hub, is excited to announce the NEW Commercialization Track at the Undergraduate Research Conference (URC).

Due to the gracious support of the Lubbock Economic Development Alliance (LEDA), all URC participants have the option to participate in the Commercialization Track for a chance to win $1,500 in prize money! $1,000 will be awarded to the 1st place winner and $500 to the People's Choice Winner.

URC participants should "opt-in" for the Commercialization Track if their research: 

  1. Can be applied in the real world and you can describe how (E.g., can make something better, faster, cheaper). 
  2. Can become a product or service for customers and you can describe what that might be.

How do I "Opt-In" for the Commercialization Track? 

  1. Select the Commercialization Track in addition to your research track when registering for the URC.
  2. Add a box or a section on the bottom right corner of your poster that displays how your research can be commercialized (see definition below). You can display this information by using bullets, text, or graphics. You must be able to verbally explain this section to the judges.
  3. Mark your calendar to be present at the Spark Conference on Thursday, April 4th from 9am-1:15pm to display your poster and on Friday, April 5th at 1:15pm for the Awards Ceremony. This is mandatory if selected as a semi-finalist.

Judges Criteria for Commercialization

  • Subject matter has a validated market
  • Innovation is potentially disruptive to the market (makes an impact)
  • Presenter can discuss vision for how the research might be utilized in a product
  • Presenter can demonstrate a "potential" market who could benefit from the product through evidence- based entrepreneurship

When and How will my poster be judged?

All posters that are included in the Commercialization Track will be labeled with a ribbon during the URC to be easily identified by the Innovation Hub judges. The Innovation Hub judges will score the posters during the URC poster sessions on April 2nd & 3rd, 2019. The 20 posters from the Commercialization Track with the highest scores will be selected as semi-finalists. All semi-finalists will be notified on Wednesday, April 3rd by 5pm. All semi-finalists are required to display their posters during the poster showcase at the Spark Conference on Thursday, April 4th from 9am-1:30pm. Spark Conference attendees will be given ballots to vote on their favorite poster and the winner will be awarded the $500 People's Choice Award. The winners of the URC Commercialization Track and the People's Choice Award will be announced on Friday, April 5th at 1:15pm at the "Week of Research & Innovation" Awards ceremony (location TDB).

Example of Commercialization

In 1965, University of Florida (UF) football coach Dwayne Douglas noticed his players were losing a lot of weight during practice and games. The athletes were not retaining water and becoming very dehydrated. Douglas teamed up with University Researcher, Dr. Cade to work on solving this problem. Through research the pair found that electrolytes are the set of minerals that your body needs to maintain healthy fluid levels when playing sports or exercising. The inventors used the Scientific Method to solve the problem and created a beverage to hydrate & replace the missing electrolytes. The beverage is known today as Gatorade. Gatorade is now a staple world-wide and a multi-billion-dollar company owed by Pepsi Corporation.