On November 13, 2020, Gabriel Mirelez ’23 competed in the Connecticut Collegiate Business Plan Competition, an annual competition organized by the Entrepreneurship Foundation. The Entrepreneurship Foundation is a 501c3 which exists “to provide effective resources for Educators and Entrepreneurs.” The competition offered $30,000 in startup grants and $5,000 in startup services to the eight student venture finalists.
Mirelez pitched his startup, Vethos Technologies, to the panel of judges. Vethos Technologies’ mission is to develop technological solutions for the emergency response sector that are rugged, configurable, and affordable. After serving in the US Navy, Mirelez learned that emergency response personnel such as police and firefighters are often provided with technologies that are fragile and unable to handle the demands of extreme environments. His solution is a rugged PC which he is currently developing and aims to pilot in 2021. His long-term goal is to employ veterans and their spouses and pursue large-scale Department of Defense contracts.
Mirelez tied for first place in Best Venture Enterprise, earning his small business $2,000 generously provided by the Entrepreneurship Foundation. He notes, “The startup world is tough for collegiate entrepreneurs, but the CT Entrepreneurship Foundation is doing all they can to make it a little easier with their student-focused competition. I am honored to have been selected and to have placed first is really a product of hard work and having such a great resource as my professor and advisor Dr. Rosemary Ostfeld. I worked hard not only to apply, but to also pitch for the first time against really strong competition. I learned a lot about myself and also about my business during this process, things that make me and my business that much stronger. Therefore, the win was not of monetary value, the win was invaluable experience that well positions Vethos in becoming one of the premier DoD small business contract awardees.”