NDSU Team Chosen for VentureWell E-Team Grant

Students receive $5,000 and three month coaching to launch their idea

About The Venturewell E-Team Grant Program

The Venturewell E-Team grant program assists multi-disciplinary student-led teams who want to bring their innovation out into the market. Each year they award over $700,000 in non-dilutive E-Team grants to early-stage student science and tech startups who are on the way to launching their innovations with a health, social, or environmental impact.

In short, they work with teams who have an intent to explore commercialization; have a social, health, or environmental impact; and have a student team of two or more students identified. 

Bio-Shield Roofing Systems Team

Recently, an NDSU team was chosen for the VentureWell E-Team grant for their Bio-Shield Roofing Systems. Their system involves creating shingles for houses made out of biomass. As winners, they receive $5,000 and three months of coaching to help develop their idea.

Laura Friedmann, student leader on the project, expands:

This project uses natural fibers to create a sustainable composite roofing material to replace the use of asphalt shingles. Flax and hemp fibers are coated with a thermo set resin of epoxy in a mold to form the shingle.

The project originated from Dr. Chad Ulven, the project’s faculty advisor, because of his strong research focus on natural fiber composite materials. Laura was given the project from the previous year’s graduating students and was focused on gaining funding and guidance to take the prototype and put it out into the market. 

Laura said, “To do this, Dr. Ulven and I got a group of students together from architecture, business and engineering to form a team to tackle the VentureWell E-team grant.”

Each student tackled a different task that best suited their expertise and used it to their advantage. The architects made up multiple aesthetic shingle designs, the business students focused on the market potential and customer base, and the engineering students worked on improving the strength characteristics of the shingles. 

Laura said, “We have worked on this grant since September and are absolutely thrilled that we got accepted and have the opportunity to make this idea a reality.”


Posted on March 23rd, 2020 by Emily in News and Stories