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Ghost Story

Posted By Matt Falk, Friday, March 23, 2018

Earlier this week, we were treated to a lunch & learn presentation form Tom Mulligan from the Coffman Group. Tom is a Sandler Certified Instructor and brings years of experience to his programs. Tom was kind enough to introduce the DISC Assessment tool to our membership. Here is a blog post he wrote in 2015 about how Extended DISC Profiling helps us better understand ourselves and those around us titled "Ghost Story". 

When two people meet for the first time, we ask, “How are you?” Do we really want to know?

It’s not that we are un-empathetic to the plight of others. But when we meet someone we are simply trying to build a working communication structure.  We are hard wired to do so and practice this with varying degrees of success regularly.   Although some people find meeting new people intimidating, we know that if we are just polite and go by this script, all will be well.

There is reason to believe this.  We are all gifted with an area of the brain called the Mirror Neuron System. This structure can be found in four separate regions of the brain (UCLA Research 2005).  It functions by allowing us to recognize, empathize and adjust our behavior. We subconsciously open ourselves to relationships with the behavior of other people.  We determine how we will communicate with methods as simple as determining a common language and as complex as reading emotions and motivations.

So in not going beyond “how are you”, it’s possible, even probable, that during this brief exchange, we may be seeing someone who isn’t there at all.

Are you real?

As in any unconscious behavior, we are not in full conscious control.  We make judgments about how people dress, what their accent implies, their rate of speech, facial expressions and what opinions or observations they are quick to reveal.  We are constantly processing our comfort with them.  When we fail to establish an easy communication structure with someone, it makes us uncomfortable.  So we blame them.  After all, we are exactly the kind of person we like to meet.  Why can’t they see that?

Those of us familiar with Extended DISC Profiling do far better in establishing and maintaining interpersonal relationships since we are using a reliable system based on behavior.  Some call this personality profiling, but what is a personality?  Arguably, it is a predictable set of responses to stimuli.  In other words, it is not who we are but how we behave.  As we grow in familiarity with people, how we behave becomes predictable.  When we are having a bad day and not behaving in familiar ways, people tell us we are not acting like ourselves.  We are not being real.

Or is it me?

We see people through the lenses of our own style.  When we meet someone who is like us, we are comfortable.  Sometimes to the point where we think we have known them all of our lives.  When we meet people who are different than ourselves, we have to use our energy to be comfortable with them.  We have to consciously do the job of the Mirror Neuron System. We don’t just try to walk in their shoes, we try their shoes on.  We also observe and judge how they try us on.  If it goes well, we assign them trust whether they deserve it or not.  We see only what we want to see and disregard the rest.

True self-awareness is not just in knowing how we behave but recognizing that there are things we don’t see.  When we have an uncomfortable communication with some one who behaves differently than us we leap to judgment.  We may see them as flippant, demanding, wishy-washy, boring or any of an infinite number of things that are simply constructs of our own style.  We see a ghost who is not there.

And so does the ghost.  We are not just reading others, but being read, we are not the only ones making judgments, but being judged.  And try as we might, the Mirror Neuron System of both parties makes it impossible to get away with it.

Beyond Profiling

Many people think Extended DISC Profiling is all about how people appear to each other based on behavior.  It goes beyond that.  Extended DISC Profiling is a powerful interpersonal and business tool.  It gives us a framework to predict how others will behave and how to adjust our styles to make them comfortable.  It helps us to see what is real and what is imagined.

We end where we begin.  How are you?  Are you real or a ghost?

Let me know.

For more information on Tom and the Coffman Group, check out their webpage or contact Tom at tom@coffmangroup.com

Tags:  business development  sales 

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When it comes to finding young STEMM talent, KC companies yearn for experiential learning

Posted By Alex Erwin, Friday, March 2, 2018

Kansas City has the potential to be in the top 10 cities of peer metros by 2025 as measured by GDP, household income and number of quality jobs (KC Rising). A threat to this goal is a lack of available talent, cited by companies aspiring to grow here. To address this problem, The University of Kansas and AstrumU hosted a College and Career Pathways Summit on the Edwards Campus on February 26th, where experienced panelists discussed the challenges of finding and curating talent in our region.


The panel was moderated by KU Edwards Vice Chancellor David Cook and included Sandy Price, a former Sprint Executive and current Co-Chair of KC Rising who brought a comprehensive understanding of workforce data for our region, Leo Morton, COO of DeBruce Companies and former UMKC Chancellor who delivered unique insights from the transect of industry and academia, Laura Evans, Senior Director of Human Capital and Talent Development at Cerner who brought a comprehensive understanding of scalability, and Chris Gould, the Director of Global Talent Acquisition at Black & Veatch who has extensive experience working with universities to find talent for a company with work all around the globe.


The word of the day seemed to be adaptability, with each panelist citing this trait as the most sought-after in employees. This is for multiple reasons:

  1. Career landscapes and roles are changing quickly

  2. Each challenge at work is often unique and requires measuring the correct response for the situation

  3. Teamwork is essential and depends on the ability to incorporate others’ perspectives


The problem lies in quantifying adaptability. While it’s easy to measure whether someone has basic programming knowledge, it’s much harder to provide evidence that they are capable of working in ambiguous and unstructured environments. This challenge is exacerbated when companies are looking to hire young talent coming out of the university, where the clearest indicator, past work experience, often doesn’t exist. Instead, they’re left with looking for other credentials for competency which include volunteer work, internships, independent projects, and part-time jobs.


There was also strong messaging on how not only is adaptability sought after, but how the lack of it can be detrimental. Laura Evans cautioned against students who haven’t experienced failure or those who have been in an environment so structured that they’ve never faced ambiguity. The concern is that if they haven’t faced ambiguity, then they don’t know their own self-efficacy. They also likely lack self-awareness on how to continue to improve and develop, another highly sought-after quality in employees. Sandy Price echoed these concerns, saying that she’s seen students fail not from a lack of academic training, but from a lack of situational experience.


With the exception of a few exemplar programs, experiential learning isn’t broadly built into our education system (at any level), yet. This gap between rote learning and hands-on experience is not only a barrier to our economic growth but it’s also a disservice to young people who are promised that a degree will make them employable, yet still often find that they come out either unprepared for the workforce or unable to convince employers that they are prepared.


Fortunately, there are efforts underway to change this. In the STEMM space, the KU Biotech Career Accelerator, Edwards Biotech Program, KCKCC Biomanufacturing course, Experiential Engineering Building at Wichita State, an Applied Genomics and Biotechnology minor offered through Kansas State and a Summer Scholars Program at the Beef Cattle Institute, while not a comprehensive list, are some initiatives that either offer or connect students with experiential learning opportunities. BioKansas is also trying to increase visibility and awareness of internship and other experiential opportunities in the life science and biotech space through the BioKansas Internship Portal.


Using AI to address the problem

AstrumU is hoping to solve some of these problems by finding new indicators for these desirable traits that are currently difficult to measure at the university level, as discussed by Adam Wray, CEO. Ultimately, they hope to use machine learning to take student credentials and predict long-term employee success in a specific company or role. Achieving this goal will require massive amounts of data from both industry employees and higher education, and ultimately, more transparency in talent selection processes. AstrumU also aspires to use their technology to make hiring more inclusive. Instead of using luck-based and sometimes somewhat arbitrary selection processes, the software will hopefully eliminate some implicit biases in the applicant selection process by using data and supported outcomes.


On talent Acquisition/Retention

One of the points mentioned by Sandy Price was that the Kansas City area is net migration negative, meaning more people leave than move into the area, putting further stress on our already tight applicant pool.


The panelists had a unified message on the need for collaboration to solve this problem. By showing a potential job candidate diverse employment opportunities within your company and in the region as a whole (and yes, that might require sharing opportunities that exist at competitors) their associated risk with moving to the area will lessen, or for the local folks, may dissuade them from migrating out. Leo Morton also made a really good point - the people that you’re likely seeking are those who have lives outside of work, so the broader Kansas City environment needs to be one where they can thrive.


As Laura Evans noted, a company will never outperform its community. Along those lines, Chris Gould added that even if a talented applicant goes to a competitor, that’s better than them leaving the area for good. Not only might they come back to work for you at some point later in their career, but they could also become a client. The presence of talent in the region will also make the area more appealing for others considering moving here.


How to have an individual Impact

One of the best final comments of the panel came from Sandy Price, who encouraged individual action concurrently within the broader efforts the community hoped to achieve. She reminded everyone that each attendee could impact the talent pipeline in our region through mentoring, sponsoring and advocating for others.


In addition to plugging members into these kinds of mentorship opportunities in the life science community, BioKansas has started ramping up efforts that connect industry and educators in ways that advance current and future talent for our region. If you’re interested in helping with these initiatives, consider getting involved in the BioKansas Talent Development & STEMM Education Committee. Contact Alex Erwin (alex@biokansas.org) for details.  


Tags:  Connect  Education  Training  Workforce Development 

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Why digital innovation matters whether you work with patients, in the lab or on clinical trials...

Posted By Dennis Ridenour, Friday, February 23, 2018

Next Wednesday, February 28th, BioKansas is partnering with Stinson Leonard to host the Digital Health Business Summit, the capstone of a three part series originally developed to support the burgeoning digital health community that has formed in Kansas City and the surrounding region.  With two events under our belt and a multitude of introductions and connections later, I can look back in hindsight and declare that the title of the event is too narrow in scope.  Many people in the region, upon hearing the title of the event, will immediately tune out and think that this event has no relevance to them or their organization.  But rest assured, we have put together a fantastic program that will be relevant to you, even if you’re working with patients, in a lab or on a clinical trial.  Matt Condon, Founder & CEO of Bardavon Health Innovations and Chairman of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, is our keynote speaker, and will give a talk on what KC has been doing, and can do, to disrupt and innovate in the healthcare space.  We’ll hear FDA Digital Health Updates from Sheva Sanders and Tricia Kaufman of Stinson, and will also engage two thought-provoking panel discussions, the first on one health approaches to digital health and the second on disruption and how technology is changing the way we develop drugs, perform clinical trials and treat patients.  To round out the event and provide a chance to continue the discussions started during the afternoon programming, Stinson will host a networking reception, complete with food and drink and glorious views of Kansas City from their 29th floor offices. 

What I’ve come to realize in coordinating these events, and what we hope to convey at next week’s event, is that digital and data applications have become integral, and often sizable, components of nearly every industry segment our members work in.  For example, next week’s event will feature Doug Dockhorn, Vice President of Global Data and Advanced Analytics at PRA Health Sciences.  Most people in the community would recognize PRA as one of the largest life science employers in the region, with more than 500 employees split between their two facilities in Lenexa.  However, most people are unaware that that number includes more than 70 employees working on the technology side, including data analytics and processing, automation, and even artificial intelligence. 

I was blown away when I first heard those numbers, and I think most others will be as well.  And that’s just one example in an industry that has finally started to realize the value of the data that’s being generated.  The healthcare industry has long understood that there is considerable value in the access they have to all of the patient data on their systems - just ask Cerner.  But drug development companies and contract research organizations have been much slower to come to the realization that there is also considerable value in the data being generated in pre-clinical animal studies and clinical trials.  And as research brings us closer and closer to precision medicine, the need to be able to merge all of this disparate data will only grow and grow.  The focus of one of our panels at next week’s event will be on the opportunities to impact human healthcare by integrating human and animal data.  On the panel will be Professor Jerry Wyckoff, who is leading the efforts behind 1Data, a human-animal health database designed to help save lives and improve the quality of life for humans and animals, as well as Brad White, Director of the Beef Cattle Institute at Kansas State, and Joe Young, President of AGL Technologies, who are both developing technologies that can track animals and animal health, and allow for intervention and treatment at much earlier stages of illness.  The application of similar technologies in humans will one day be a game changer.

What I’ve also come to realize is that Kansas City has the assets, expertise, and community support needed to grow into a leader in this space.  Kansas City is home to a large number of digital health companies, many of whom are thriving and have been able to find both the talent and the capital they need to grow.  But there is still much to be done and much that you can do.  At next week’s event, you’ll hear from folks like Jeff Dunn of Redivus Health, who will participate on the disruption panel, and will provide his insights not only on how Redivus is disrupting healthcare delivery, but also how Kansas City can better support companies like his.  You’ll also hear from Karen Fenaroli, who will be moderating the disruption panel, and who has been working tirelessly to attract General Assembly to Kansas City to develop a robust talent pipeline that all of us can benefit from.  So as you can see, whether you work at a straight up tech company, or at a healthcare, pharmaceutical, or contract research organization, there’s a little something for everyone at the Digital Health Business Summit next week.  We hope you’ll join us for the event, and add your voice to the discussion as we look to make Kansas City a hub for healthcare innovation.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION & TO REGISTER 

Tags:  Animal Health  Connect  Digital Health  Education  Entrepreneurship  One Health 

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2018 Bioscience & Innovation Day Recap

Posted By BioKansas, Thursday, February 8, 2018

Last week, BioKansas and the Enterprise Center of Johnson County led a sizable delegation to Topeka for Bioscience & Innovation Day at the Capitol.  The day featured small group meetings with legislators throughout the morning, a legislator lunch featuring talks from the ECJC, JCB Laboratories and KCAS Bioanalytical & Biomarker Services, and a short debrief session where attendees discussed takeaways and action items. 

BioKansas would like to thank Shahira Stafford and Ron Seeber of the Kansas Agribusiness Retailer's Association for their help in coordinating the day's schedule, as well as Merck Animal Health and the ECJC, who helped to sponsor the Welcom Breakfast and Legislator Lunch, respectively.  We also must acknowledge Melissa Roberts of the ECJC, who was key to the success in organizing and marketing the event.  With her help, we were able to assemble an impressively large (more than 50 strong!) and diverse delegation who collectively educated legislators on the need for resources and continued support for innovators and innovative tech and life science companies in the state.  Melissa has written up a great summary of the messaging we heard that day, which is included below. 

Going forward, BioKansas will continue to engage with the legislature throughout the remainder of the session, and we will be in contact with our membership for additional follow up opportunities and/or when the need arises.  If you are interested in joining the BioKansas Public Policy Committee, please let us know.  The committee is integral in helping guide the organization’s positions on legislation and policy, and meets once a month while the legislature is in session. 

 

From:
Melissa Roberts
Vice President, Strategy & Economic Development
Enterprise Center in Johnson County
913-449-5307

This was the first time that we’ve collaborated with BioKansas on an event like this—it was a resounding success and collaboration strengthened both our messages. I’ve attached the leave-behind we used so that you can see what issues we promoted. We had almost 50 innovators in Topeka yesterday, meeting and greeting members of the legislature and speaking to a group over the lunch hour. In the morning, we were joined by Majority Leader Don Hineman, who shared his thoughts with us. Then, we broke out into small groups and met with 38 members of the legislature.

Here are some of the messages that came across loud and clear:                             

  1. The focus of the legislature right now is on the K-12 funding formula, which has large-scale implications on the state budget for years to come. There’s very little ability to talk about additional appropriations or workforce development issues until the next budget cycle, which will be the 2019 session (for FY20).
  2. There is a broad sense of optimism that the state is nearing the end of our financial crisis and that the legislature will be able to “get back to governing” again towards the end of the session. Many in leadership agreed that this is a great time to begin the conversation about what future appropriations to support this community could look like, and expressed an interest in being involved in that process.
  3. We were able to identify some legislative advocates who will be part of future efforts to include innovation and entrepreneurship funding priorities in the FY20 budget, many of whom have expressed interest in participating in an Innovation Caucus. We are working to organize a future meeting now, and I’ll keep you in the loop as that effort progresses.
  4. All legislators who were in office two years ago immediately recognized Angel Tax Credits as the policy that they had last heard from this community about. They were all quick to bring that up, which is a great indicator that our messaging has made an impact in the past.
  5. All legislators we talked to recognized that Commerce is desperately underfunded, and that resource crunch is impacting incentives like the Angel Investment Tax Credit. We will continue to stay in close contact with Commerce to understand how we can best help  them communicate changes in the implementation of this credit to entrepreneurs and investors.

Please feel free to get in touch with any questions, thoughts or suggestions for next year!

 Attached Files:

Tags:  Advocacy  Education  Entrepreneurship  Workforce Development 

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K-INBRE & BioKansas - Supporting regional research collaboration

Posted By BioKansas, Thursday, January 11, 2018

This weekend kicks off the start of the research competition season in Kansas – on Saturday, nearly 350 undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral researchers from across the region will gather at the Sheraton in Overland Park, Kansas, for the Annual Kansas IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (K-INBRE) Symposium.  K-INBRE is a federally funded program designed to strengthen our region’s pipeline of scientists and researchers by promoting the development, coordination and sharing of research resources and expertise.  In layman’s terms, it means there is going to be a gaggle of amazingly brilliant students and professors gathered to talk about the amazing research they’re doing here in Kansas, and the resources and expertise that is available for collaboration. 

Students researchers from 10 regional universities will be on hand at the Symposium on Saturday, and will provide two minute summaries of their research to judges throughout the afternoon poster session. Judges will be looking to identify the students with the best project, poster and presentation.  As an organization that strives to bridge the gap between industry and education, BioKansas is proud to support K-INBRE by providing industry STEM professionals to help judge and by providing funds for the winning students.  We also mix things up a bit by adding an additional component to the scoring rubric: commercialization.  We will also be looking for the best and brightest researchers the K-INBRE schools have to offer, but, in addition, we are also looking for those students who have taken the next step in the research process.  Students who have an eye toward the business of science, and are working to solve a problem or generate a product.  For these students, the projects weren’t just about understanding how things work (though that type of research IS important), but about leveraging that understanding to innovate and create something that can change the world.

We’ve seen some amazingly talented students grow up right here in our own backyards. From developing a new method of diagnosing Parkinson’s Disease using simple facial recognition software to creating new ways to prevent infections in joint replacements, Kansas can claim its stake at the forefront of innovation.  Registration is closed for K-INBRE this weekend, but we invite you to attend future research competitions, including others that we support such as the Capitol Graduate Research Summit, the Kansas Science & Engineering Fair and the Greater Kansas City Science & Engineering Fair, to catch a glimpse of the future of biotech and to see for yourself the incredible students and researchers being trained in Kansas and the surrounding region.

Tags:  BioGENEius  Connect  Education  Entrepreneurship  Training 

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The Importance of the Graduate Student Tax Waiver

Posted By Dennis Ridenour, President & CEO, Wednesday, December 13, 2017

By now, you're likely aware of the tax bill that is wending its way through Congress.  One change our members have identified that could have a major impact on both educational access and workforce/talent development is the elimination of the graduate student tax waiver.  Please see below to read our recent outreach to Kansas legislators, asking them to keep this crucial provision in any tax legislation that moves forward.  

Dear Kansas Representative/Senator:
As a representative of the life science and healthcare industries in the state of Kansas, and on behalf of the nearly 27,000 students who attend graduate school in the state of Kansas, I’m writing to ask that Congress not consider graduate student tuition waivers as taxable income.  As you know, in addition to a small stipend to help cover living expenses, graduate students in STEM fields (science, tech, engineering and math) often have their tuition waived in exchange for having the student teach, or perform research for the school.  Currently, this waived tuition is not taxed as income.  However, a provision in the recently approved House bill would change that, adding the amount of waived tuition to the student's taxable income.  If passed, this will have a profound impact on the ability of students to earn advanced degrees, and, subsequently, the talent pipeline that feeds into the industries these students hope to work in.  
As an M.S. degree holder, I can speak firsthand to the benefit this tuition waiver provides for graduate students, who already exist on a relatively meager stipend and who shouldn’t have to worry about finding enough money to cover taxes on money that they won’t actually see.  If this waiver is eliminated, we could see a drastic decrease in the number of students who are able to afford graduate school at Kansas institutions such as the University of Kansas, Wichita State, Kansas State, Emporia State, Pitt State, Fort Hays State and the University of Kansas Medical Center.  This could cause a profound decrease in the qualified talent available to the life science, healthcare and biotech industries across the country and in Kansas.  
During the reconciliation process, please ask your House/Senate colleagues who are Conferees to remove this clause of the tax bill, and continue to support education, and access to it, for students in Kansas and across the country.  Please do not hesitate to reach out if BioKansas can help provide more information or connections to students who would be directly impacted.  
Thank you for your time, and I hope we can count on your support.
Sincerely,

Dennis Ridenour
President & CEO, BioKansas

 

Tags:  Advocacy  Education  Workforce Development 

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The Intersection of Liabilities for Digital Health Companies

Posted By Travis Holt, Partner at Brush Creek Partners, Thursday, October 19, 2017

Are you providing a technology platform to improve the way physicians communicate with their patients? Does your website help employees better use their health insurance plan? Does your software analyze post surgical patient data and provide information to reduce the incidents of infection? If so, you’re one of many companies who may be wondering what type of exposure you have to professional liability claims related to a failure of your technology.

Let’s get one thing out of the way quickly, you should assume your general liability policy will provide no coverage for a technology failure or cyber incident. While general liability is intended to cover bodily injury, almost all general liability policies have professional liability and cyber liability exclusions. A failure of your technology is going to be considered a professional or cyber exposure, thus falling into one of those common exclusions.

To better understand your professional liability exposure, you should first ask yourself.....READ THE ENTIRE ORIGINAL BLOG POST FROM BRUSH CREEK PARTNERS

Want to talk with Travis and other experts about cybersecurity and the liabilities of digital health companies?  Join us next week for breakfast on October 26th for the next installment of our Digital Health Business Series.  

Tags:  Cybersecurity  Digital Health  Education  Entrepreneurship 

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Supply chain lessons learned from this hurricane season

Posted By Journal of Healthcare Contracting, Friday, October 13, 2017

Repertoire/JHC Editor Mark Thill on Oct. 4 spoke with Scott Nelson, senior vice president of supply chain, North America, Cardinal Health; and Mike Wallin, operations manager, Penske Logistics. (Penske provides trucks and drivers for Cardinal Health’s medical segment, and helps optimize hospital delivery routes.) Here are notes from the Q&A with Scott Nelson. Click here for Penske Logistics storm stories and photos.

Thill: Any lessons learned to share with supply chain colleagues?

Nelson: Plan early and involve your customers and key business partners in that process. Look beyond what could come up as an immediate need during the situation itself and plan for multiple contingencies. Without the joint planning I described earlier between Cardinal, Penske and the providers we serve, this story would have had a very different ending.

Communicate realistic expectations with your customers. We were committed to being fully operational as quickly as possible; however we set a clear foundation that it would not be “business as usual” and there would be challenges with inbound freight and outbound volume surges from the backlog. That candor and opportunity to jointly prioritize actions to achieve stabilization built a stronger relationship with our partners.

Lastly, take care of your employees first and they will make sure that the customer is taken care of. The Penske drivers were rock stars throughout this ordeal. They were so willing to put their personal challenges aside and safety in question so our customers would get what they need.

READ THE ENTIRE STORY AT JHCOnline HERE......

Want to hear more about these topics?  Join us next week at our 2nd Annual Life Science & Healthcare Supply Chain Summit.  

Tags:  Connect  Education  Supply Chain 

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Celebrating Regional Innovation with the University of Kansas

Posted By BioKansas, Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Innovation.  It’s one of the calling cards of our industry, and one of the most exciting aspects of the work we do at BioKansas.  We work with the researchers, students and entrepreneurs around the region who are creating, developing and commercializing the latest treatments and technologies. These advances often have the potential to make a dramatic impact by increasing treatment options and improving the quality of life for patients.  One of the primary local sources for innovation in Kansas are the universities across the region, and next week on October 10th, the University of Kansas is hosting an event focused on the most exciting innovations that professors and students are spinning out of KU and KUMC. 

The Celebration of Innovation: A Startup Showcase is a half day event highlighting the most promising early stage faculty and student startups at KU.  Guests will hear from entrepreneurial KU alumni from VML and bloom, and from the researchers and entrepreneurs pushing to develop new vaccines, medical devices and diagnostics.  Among those companies that will be featured are:

hoCFD– Founded to develop, market and sell a highly accurate/efficient computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software named hoMusic (High-Order MUlti-physics SImulation Code). Comparing with existing commercial CFD software, hoMusic can deliver more accurate turbulent flow computations using large eddy simulation (LES) in much shorter turnaround time.

Hafion– Whooping cough (pertussis), a once presumed conquered disease, is re-emerging because the current vaccine is losing effectiveness. The currently-used acellular vaccine (aP) only stops symptoms and protection is short-lived. Hafion is developing a pertussis vaccine which prevents infection, not just the symptoms. The formulation is a simple, 3-4 component vaccine requiring a single administration.

Evoke Medical – Established to translate and commercialize platform technology developed by Drs. Lisa Friis and Paul Arnold, Evoke Medical is working to research & develop osteoinductive piezoelectric medical devices in order to improve patient outcomes, reduce healthcare costs, and streamline the clinical episode of care with the singular goal of improving humanity’s quality of life. Evoke leverages the human body’s mechanical biofeedback system to design disruptive “smart implants” that heal bone using natural bone forming pathways.

Digital Nanogenetics – An early stage start-up developing an automated, portable single biomolecule sequencing technology, called exonuclease time-of-flight (or X-TOF™), which employs a sequencing by subtraction strategy unique to the commercial sequencing industry while providing superior read-length and base call accuracy at a very high speed.

Exodus Biosciences – Exodus is working to develop a blood-based biomarker test for Multiple Sclerosis that will pioneer an accessible diagnostic, enabling the identification and treatment of disease to occur earlier than ever before.

Immediately following the Showcase, KU Innovation and Collaboration (KUIC) and BioKansas will host the Inventor’s Networking Reception where attendees can network with the innovative student and faculty entrepreneurs.  The annual Baxendale Innovation Award and the Best Student Pitch Award will also be given at the reception.  We know we’ll be in attendance, looking for the next big groundbreaking technology, and we hope you are able to join us in Lawrence on October 10th for this exciting event.  For more information and to register for the Celebration of Innovation, please visit http://kuic.ku.edu/celebration-innovation-registration.

Tags:  Connect  Entrepreneurship 

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A Story of David and Goliath, Bio Sciences-style

Posted By Nancy Zurbuchen, Thursday, September 28, 2017
Updated: Thursday, September 28, 2017

At one time or another, most startup founders face frustration and road blocks, seemingly coming at them from all sides.  An unsupportive family member, being turned down for investment or a loan, unable to find qualified employees.  This is normal stuff, and entrepreneurs get creative at finding other ways to make it work.

However, sometimes entrepreneurial progress is stopped cold by federal government regulation, and this is especially true for the highly regulated bioscience sector. What’s a small bio start-up to do against a big bureaucracy? Complain to anyone who will listen? Call your Senator? Hire an attorney, for heaven’s sake? What you should absolutely do is contact the Office of Advocacy -- and that’s me, your new Region 7 Small Business Advocate.

Our sole purpose is to look out for the interests of startup companies, entrepreneurs, and small business. The Office of Advocacy employs a group of really sharp, engaged attorneys who are specialists in all of the regulatory areas, such as intellectual property, employment issues, OSHA regulations, food and drug, safety, international commerce, etc. They work directly with legislators and government agency employees who are writing new laws / rules / regulations, to help ensure that its effect on small business is taken into consideration to avoid unintended consequences. Advocacy also works to change existing regulations that are over burdensome to small business.

Think of the Office of Advocacy as a resource; we also have decades of small business research data that might be helpful to your bio start-up.

-Nancy Zurbuchen, Small Business Advocate, Region 7 (MO, KS, IA, NE)
Small Business Administration (SBA) // Office of Advocacy 
www.sba.gov/advocacy
nancy.zurbuchen@sba.gov
(314) 539-6615


Nancy and the regional SBA Office of Advocacy recently hosted a regulatory roundtable in Overland Park to help identify specific regulatory barriers to small business growth.  She'll be featured in Kansas City again on October 10th, when she will participate as a panelist at our Women in Science & Entrepreneurship event.  Click here for more information and to register.

Tags:  Advocacy  Connect  Education  Entrepreneurship 

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