The University of Toledo Biodesign Teams competes successfully at the international Biodesign Challenge in New York
Two teams from the University of Toledo Biodesign Challenge competed in New York in June at the international Biodesign Challenge Summit and did exceptionally well. Barbara Miner, chair of the UToledo Department of Arts says, “In only our second year of competition at the international Biodesign Challenge, UT once again was on the international map and competed brilliantly against strong competition in NYC for the Biodesign Challenge!” UToledo team, btilix was one of only 9 global finalists for the overall award out of only 34 institutions that made it to the international competition, and team Plastigrow, was runner up in the Stella McCartney Prize for Sustainable Fashion. Stella McCartney is the daughter of Paul McCartney and a well-known fashion designer for Adidas and other name brands. According to the Biodesign Challenge web site, the McCartney prize is awarded to the BDC team that “explores and/or develops proofs of concept for fashion alternatives that are biological, sustainable, ethical, and free of animal products. We ask the teams to explore lifecycles, production processes, disposal, and potential for recycling.” UToledo team "PlastiGrow," the runner up for the McCartney Prize, developed a biodegradable material that can be used for many products in place of conventional plastic, and greatly reduce the cost and energy spent on waste and recycling efforts. Team members are McKenzie Dunwald, Art; Michael Socha, Bioengineering; Colin Chalmers, Art; and Ysabelle Yrad, Environmental Science. Miner adds, “In short, we hit it out of the ballpark through sheer hardworking collaboration on the part of our cross-disciplinary teams of students, as well as the outstanding effort, creative foresight and sheer dedication of our new assistant professors, Eric Zeigler and Brian Carpenter. Their work, advancing the sophisticated presentations, modeling integrative thinking, and employing best pedagogical practices as well as pulling together faculty members and researches from many disciplines to help each of the teams, is really meritorious.” Both teams will showcase their work in Toledo at the Momentum arts festival September 19-21 at the Mini-Makers’ Faire in Promenade Park.
Press Release Contact Name: Barbara WF Miner
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Organization Name: University of Toledo School of Visual and Performing Arts