Graduate Research Roundtable #3: Career Resources & Funding Opportunities

Join ECS-GSO, SU Libraries, and Graduate Career Services for the third and final event in the Research Roundtable series on Thursday, April 5, 2018 from 6–7:30 p.m. in 331 Link Hall.

SU librarians and associate director of Graduate Student Services, Dan Olson-Bang, will discuss a variety of career resources, including industry and company profiles, funding tools, and more to help you launch your career. Free food and one free drink ticket provided!

Registration is limited to 30 participants, register today: http://bit.ly/2tMPuV7

SparkCharge raises capital and joins Techstars

SparkCharge has officially “launched” from the Blackstone LaunchPad at Syracuse University to acceleration stage with Techstars in Boston.  The startup has achieved a significant milestone, growing from a college student’s idea, to an award-winning company that has won several awards and raised institutional funding, and is now part of an accelerator program internationally known for rapidly scaling great companies. The latest investment round closed in February and the clean tech hardware startup expects to raise another round later this year.

Joshua Aviv, founder and CEO of SparkCharge, developed a portable, ultrafast charging unit for electric vehicles that fits in the trunk of a car and charges at level 3 speed, giving users one mile every 60 seconds.

Winning a spot in the Techstars Boston startup accelerator gives a competitive boost for the growing company. In the last 10 years, more than 1,000 Techstars portfolio companies have collectively raised over $4.4 billion in total funding, and are now valued at $11.4 billion.  Fewer than 1% of all companies that apply to a Techstars program are accepted into the worldwide network that inspires, educates and connects entrepreneurs, accelerating innovation and startup activity.

Aviv, a graduate of Syracuse University, conceived his idea as an undergraduate student, working with the campus-wide innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem.

“The Techstars accelerator program builds on the solid startup foundation we received through Syracuse University’s amazing innovation ecosystem,” says Aviv. “Having a well-connected and collaborative support network at SU helped us move from idea to venture, and positioned us to now scale to the next stage. We intend to stay engaged with SU as we grow.”

“SparkCharge is joining a vibrant group of entrepreneurs,” said Clement Cazalot, managing director for the Techstars Boston Accelerator. “Our Boston program has helped launch and fund 144 startups, with north of $750 million in total funding. Josh is now part of the most connected and successful entrepreneurial network in the world, as well as Boston’s very active angel network and VC industry that is focusing more on earlier stage tech innovation, enabling access to funds at all stages of development.”

“Each year we select the most promising companies to join our three-month mentorship-driven accelerator,” said David Cohen, founder and CEO of Techstars. “SparkCharge will now be part of the Techstars community for life, with access to over 1,500,000 founders, investors, mentors, and industry leaders. Leveraging the combined power of Blackstone LaunchPad and Techstars resources and connections, SparkCharge and other high-growth startups are surrounded and supported by a team of experts who can help them quickly start and scale.”

“We’re in Techstars to learn, grow, and network,” Aviv says. “We’re excited to bring this product to market, and working with this network will help us get to commercialize our technology faster and better.”

Through Techstars, Aviv and his team of four engineers are getting hands-on help and mentorship from experts in multiple fields, while working out of spaces such as Mass Robotics. A first-time CEO, Aviv says access to an international pool of knowledgeable and experienced mentors is already advancing SparkCharge to a new level.  “We want to keep a presence in Boston. We’ve fallen in love with the city,” Aviv says. “The startup ecosystem here is awesome.”

However, Aviv says the startup is not leaving its home in Syracuse. Personal connections and the manufacturing industry in Syracuse has strong pulls on the startup. “Our roots are in Syracuse and we want to tap into the manufacturing and industrial base there,” Aviv says. He expects to keep his research, engineering, testing and manufacturing based in the region, while focusing sales and finance operations in the Boston area where there is cluster of supportive investors. He particularly values his research collaboration with the SyracuseCoE, which is home base for his engineering team, research fellows and interns. His goal is to create regional impact. “To me, entrepreneurship means having a great social impact on every layer of our society. As entrepreneurs, we have the ability to create change in our communities faster and on a deeper level than many other people.”

In the meantime, SparkCharge is signing up electric vehicle owners to participate in testing their beta product. Answering questions and collecting feedback from users with various electric car models, the engineers are refining the product leading up to a manufacturing run later this year.

Supporting this growth is an investment by PJC, a Boston-based venture capital firm that focuses on consumer and enterprise technology investments. PJC takes an active approach to investing, striving to build collaborative relationships with portfolio company management. They have constructed the firm and their team around the strategy of building market-leading companies with innovative founders and serial entrepreneurs. The firm and its partners have backed market-leading companies across multiple industries such as Nest Labs, Yandex, Expensify and GetWellNetwork.

“We are excited to partner with Josh and the entire SparkCharge team,” said Mike Cunningham, a Principal at PJC. “They have the drive, conviction and vision necessary to solve the problems faced in this rapidly expanding market. We look forward to working with the SparkCharge team and Techstars to help bring their idea to the electric vehicle community.”

“Josh and SparkCharge is a perfect example of the transformational impact that Blackstone envisions Techstars will have on our LaunchPad program,” said Alisha Slye, global director of Blackstone LaunchPad.  “Their content, mentorship and network will provide expanded access for more LaunchPad ventures to grow and scale. Blackstone applauds Syracuse University’s leadership and commitment to entrepreneurship in our growing global LaunchPad network which we will now be able to scale to over one million student with Techstars support.”

SparkCharge’s success follows 2017 accomplishments that included:  Blackstone LaunchPad/Techstars Demo Day, First Place; FuzeHub Commercialization Competition, First Place; Innovation Fund Award, SyracuseCoE; New York State Business Plan Competition, Grand Prize; New York State Business Plan Competition, Clean Tech Winner; Raymond Von Dran iPrize, First Place Winner Clean Tech; and Panasci Business Plan Competition 2017, Winner of Product Innovation Prize and Sustainability Award.

Aviv’s plans for 2018 include final design and testing of the beta unit, manufacturing and unit sales.  SparkCharge is currently taking beta test orders: spcev.com/forms/betatest/

Read more about SparkCharge here and at spcev.com. Contact: Josh Aviv, sparkcharge@spcev.com

Blackstone Charitable Foundation and Techstars announced this week at SXSW EDU that they are teaming up to supercharge Blackstone LaunchPad, the preeminent campus-based entrepreneurship program.  Read details here.

Digitalia Hispanica

To complement its growing print and digital collections, the Libraries have added Digitalia Hispanica, a global academic database of e-books and e-journals in Spanish, with access to thousands of sources from publishers such as Anthropos, Biblioteca Nueva, Calambur, El Ruedo Iberico. New publishers are being added each year. The comprehensive Spanish language collection contains a wide range of titles related to science, social science, history, philosophy, political science, art, literature, and linguistics.

Digitalia Hispanica includes journal coverage for titles such as Cuadernos de Estudios Gallegos, Hispanica, and Revista de Literatura.

The collection is searchable in Spanish or English. The texts can be read, downloaded,or listened to in Spanish or translated to English. The site is similar to Summon, offering many search options and filtering by the subject.

For further reading:

GOBI(R) Library Solutions from EBSCO Partners with Digitalia Hispanica to Provide Spanish E-Book Content through GOBI(R).” PRWeb Newswire 2 Feb. 2017. Business Insights: Essentials. Web. 9 Mar. 2018

Ann Skiold, Librarian for Fine Arts, Spanish and Italian Language and Literature.

Visual History Archive (USC Shoah Foundation and ProQuest)

In 1994, Steven Spielberg, director of the film “Schindler’s List,” established the Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation at the University of Southern California (USC), with a goal to “record on videotape the testimonies of 50,000 survivors and other witnesses of the Holocaust from around the world for educational purposes before it was too late.” This initial undertaking was completed in 1999.

While most of the original 51,696 Holocaust testimonies in the Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive came from Jewish Holocaust survivors, testimonies were also obtained from survivors of persecution against the Sinti and Roma (Gypsies), Jehovah’s Witnesses, and homosexuals, from survivors of Nazi eugenics policies, and from political prisoners and forced laborers, as well as from rescuers and aid providers, liberators, and participants in war crimes trials.  Subsequently, in keeping with the Shoah Foundation’s mission “to overcome prejudice, intolerance, and bigotry—and the suffering they cause—through the educational use of the Visual History Archive,” the Archive was expanded to include testimonies provided by eyewitnesses to a number of other genocides.

The Visual History Archive provides access to a fully streaming video collection of indexed primary-source testimonies of survivors and witnesses of the Holocaust and other genocides.  Within this archive, the largest of its kind, “history is preserved as told by the people who lived it,” and “the vast majority of the testimonies contain a complete personal history of life before, during, and after interviewees’ firsthand experience with genocide.”  (A supplementary feature enables the user to connect to contextual and related materials in other ProQuest databases.)

Total number of items: More than 54,400 video testimonies at an average of two hours each.

[Subcollections:] the European Holocaust, 1939-1945 (52,309 interviews); the Armenian Genocide, 1915-1923 (334 interviews); the Tutsi Genocide in Rwanda, 1994 (86 interviews); the Nanjing Massacre, 1937-1938 (30 interviews); the Guatemalan Genocide, 1978-1996 (10 interviews); and the Cambodian Genocide, 1975-1979 (5 interviews)]

  • Roughly 116,000 hours of film
  • Transcripts being added over time (initially over 900 German transcripts and almost 1,000 English transcripts)
  • Almost 65,000 index terms in English
  • Over 719,000 images (photographs, documents, works of art, artifacts from war, etc.)
  • 9 million names of family members and prominent figures
  • Roughly 49,000 location references
  • 2,500 recitations of literary works (poems, letters, diaries)
  • Over 2,100 musical recitals
  • Date range: 1915-1996
  • Geographic/language information: The filmed interviews were conducted in 63 countries in more than 40 different languages.  Over 27,000 testimonies are in English.

Examples of uses:  The Visual History Archive has served as a major resource for history and genealogy researchers, including individuals drawing on Archive content in producing dissertations and theses, publications, and documentary films.  In addition, curricula across a multiplicity of disciplines, in a variety of educational settings from secondary schools to colleges and universities, have made use of Visual History Archive material.  Examples of instructional use:

French Literature teaching example

Graphic Art teaching example

Additional information:

 

Lydia Wasylenko, Librarian for Citizenship and Humanities, Syracuse University Libraries

Pop-Up student art show opening March 12 in Bird Library

Sarah Allam works on her installation

For the second year, the SU Libraries and the Syracuse University School of Art in the College of Visual and Performing Arts are collaborating to showcase the works of innovative art students in a pop-up art show.  The students are from the First Year Foundations course, taught by School of Art faculty Tom Hall and Dusty Herbig. Their show “Reference Point” will feature thematic installations throughout Bird Library, opening March 12 and on view through April 12 during all hours that the library is open.

An artist’s reception on Monday, March 26 from 1 to 3 p.m. will give visitors a chance to meet the 27 students who are creating works for the show.  The reception will be in the Blackstone LaunchPad, the glass cube on the main level of Bird Library, and is open to the community.

LaunchPad staff worked with Learning Commons librarians to help students create proposals and vision statements, pitch them to their peers and library staff, receive feedback, and revise their final proposals.  This process was the same as a professional public art call, and intended to teach students the skills required to be a creative entrepreneur.  Artist statements will be on view with the works, explaining the thematic and narrative elements of each piece.

“As the busiest academic building on campus, with more than one million visitors a year, Bird Library will provide students with great visibility for their first public art show,” said David Seaman, Dean of Libraries and University Librarian, “and we are keen to find additional ways to use library spaces to showcase the creative and academic achievements of the Syracuse University community.”

“The idea of the Reference Point puts the library at the heart of the creative process,” said Hall.  “The library is often the first point of contact for researching a thought, and its web of references the creative divergent energy of discovery and discourse.”  Hall is a public artist who works in studio arts, with a particular focus on sculpture. His work has been shown internationally, including Villa Favard, Florence; Stone Quarry Art Park, New York; Les Tombées de la Nuit, Rennes International Arts Festival, France; and Key Arts, Newport, Isle of Wight.

Herbig teaches lithography, intaglio, serigraphy, and relief, and also serves as the director and master printer of Lake Effect Editions, the press of the printmaking intensive. Herbig exhibits nationally, participating in juried exhibitions in major cities across the country, and internationally, including exhibitions in Japan, Canada, China, Argentina, Spain, Pakistan, Taiwan, Brazil, Germany, South Korea, and Poland. His work is in the permanent collections of many institutions.

Check Facebook for photos of the show:  @LaunchPadSYR