August 2009

Ralph Mauer

Ralph Mauer is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Strategy & Entrepreneurship in the Tulane Freeman School of Business. His teaching and research focus on innovation and strategy in highly dynamic markets, with an emphasis on both technology and the cultural industries. His work and consulting experience includes time with Apple, Daimler-Benz, Chrysler, Deluxe and multiple internet startups. Ralph earned a Ph.D. from Stanford University, an MBA from the University of Florida, and a B.S. from Northwestern University.

Matt Dearmon

Matt Dearmon is currently a candidate of Master of Business Administration and Master of Global Management degrees at Tulane's Freeman School of Business. Outside of the classroom, he currently serves as the president of the Tulane Entrepreneurship Association (TEA). Before arriving to Tulane, Matt served five years in the Marine Corps, during which time he worked at overseas diplomatic posts in Brussels, Belgium and Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Upon completion of his active service, Matt worked as a security consultant in Central Asia for the US Department of State. In the private sector, Matt has enjoyed working in different capacities with start-up ventures in London, United Kingdom and New Orleans. He holds BA degrees in International Business and Russian Language studies from American University in Washington, D.C.

Steven Doehler

Steven J Doehler is an expert in the area of user-centered product development. He received a BFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago and an MFA from the Ohio State University, both in Industrial Design. He has worked professionally for Cesaroni Design (industrial design consulting) Hill-Rom Inc (medical furniture and equipment) and started IDWorks (industrial design consulting) in 1999. He is also active in several entrepreneurial efforts that center on health and wellness. After sixteen years of professional practice, Steven joined the faculty of the University of Cincinnati's Industrial Design Program, continuing his work in the development of user-centered products. Along with this work, he is also leading efforts in UC's School of Design to bring a stronger entrepreneurial spirit to the student body.

Ryan Shelby

Ryan Shelby is a fourth-year Alfred P. Sloan PhD Student Fellow in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. Shelby's doctoral research focuses on the macro- and micro-decisions that minorities, underserved groups, and rural area residents make concerning sustainability and renewable energy technologies. The outcome of his research will be an expert systems tool that can predict end users' willingness to adopt sustainable and renewable energy technologies. This tool will be utilized by engineers and public policy makers to better design sustainability policies and technologies to meet the needs of end user groups. Shelby is the co-founder and project manager for the Community Assessment of Renewable Energy and Sustainability (CARES), an engineering and sustainability assessment organization dedicated to co-developing interoperable open source sustainability assessment tools and enabling consumers to be able to make informed decisions about sustainability and renewable energy technologies.


Ryan Shelby has applied for and been awarded 1 grant

  • Community Assessment of Renewable Energy and Sustainability

    Began March, 2008 and ended March, 2009

    Current research shows that immediate action has to be taken to curb climate change caused by greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions due to human activity. While there is a great debate on a policy level and many new large-scale sustainable energy projects are proposed, individuals and communities do not have immediate access to reliable, up-to-date information about their level of sustainability or access to educational tools and relevant solutions to implement. Our own research shows that living sustainably, having access to accurate environmental data, and having implementable solutions are of major concerns to consumers. Furthermore, it shows that people would be more eager to adopt a sustainable lifestyle if they are able to collaborate, share and work together with others. CARES seeks to help reduce climate change by being the first to close the loop of assessment, advisement and implementation of a more sustainable lifestyle. CARES will create an online platform and portal to: • (1) assess a user’s individual level of sustainability and get relevant advise on solutions for their specific situation • (2) initiate, collaborate, build and share assessment models with consumers, academics, NGO's and solution providers • (3) access a library of case studies and best practice documents to be compared with user’s current situation. CARES will incorporate a long-term incremental growth strategy and will collaborate closely with its different stakeholders. Due to nature of CARES, it will need initial NCIIA funding for the proof of concept and will be profitable by the end year 2.

    With the team:

    • Dr. Michael Frenklach Vice Chair of Instruction, Mechanical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley
    • Mrs. Deborah Rutkowski-Howard Senior Research Administrator, Sponsored Projects Office, University of California, Berkeley
    • Dr. Alice Agogino Roscoe and Elizabeth Hughes Chair of Mechanical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley
    • Dr. Sara Beckman Senior Lecturer , School of Business, University of California, Berkeley
    • Dr. Peter Berek Professor, Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California, Berkeley
    • Dr. Vicente Borja-Ramírez Visiting Scholar, Mechanical Engineering , University of California, Berkeley

Jonathan Weaver

Jonathan Weaver is Professor and chair of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Detroit Mercy, where he teaches statics, dynamics, innovation and creativity, vehicle dynamics, robotics, machine design, design of experiments, mechanical measurements laboratory, computer aided engineering, product design and development, systems engineering, systems architecture, front end of innovation and design for X. His research interests and publications relate to robotics, vehicle dynamics, design of experiments, robust design, engineering education, innovation, entrepreneurship, new product development and the product development process. He holds a BS degree from Virginia Tech, and MS and PhD degrees from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He serves as the co-curriculum director for the Masters in Product Development Program, is a Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network Fellow, and is part of a team currently working to bring entrepreneurship content to engineering and other technical programs at the university.


Jonathan Weaver has applied for and been awarded 1 grant

  • Entrepreneruship at the University of Detroit Mercy

    Began June, 2006 and ended December, 2007

    Vision: The University of Detroit Mercy (UDM) will define, create, deliver and sustain an exceptional program that develops both an entrepreneurial attitude/mindset and entrepreneurial competencies of students from K 12 through baccalaureate education levels. This program will be built upon strong foundations in separate and collaborative engineering and business programs, and upon the programs at other institutions. UDM will be actively involved in both utilizing and creating KEEN Network resources; several KEEN advisors will be involved. An overarching theme of the UDM Entrepreneurship Program will be service to the needs of the Detroit community and concepts of social entrepreneurship, all enveloped within a process which develops in our students the mindset that there is a world of opportunity awaiting them. Plan: The preliminary plan for entrepreneurship programs is to develop six elements over a four year period: 1. Pre-college Entrepreneurship Modules 2. Entrepreneurship Case Studies in Engineering Fundamentals Courses 3. Integrated Design, Entrepreneurship and Service (IDEAS) Course (junior year) 4. Capstone Product Entrepreneurship Course (senior year) 5. Entrepreneurship Certificate 6. Entrepreneurship Minor Additional support will be provided by NCIIA and Ford Motor Company. Other partners will support important functions of this initiative: The Engineering Society of Detroit (link to the community of practice), Small Business Association of Michigan (link to entrepreneurs), NEXT Energy (alternative energy e-ship). This plan will enable UDM to be a strong, contributing member of the KEEN Network while continuing to provide the right skills to enable our students to “envision a better world, and then create it.”

    With the team:

    • Jonathan Weaver
    • Dr. Barbara Schirmer Vice President, Academic Affairs & Provost, University of Detroit Mercy
    • Reverend Oswald Mascarenhas, Ph.D. Professor, Business Administration, University of Detroit Mercy

Nassif Rayess

Nassif Rayess received his Bachelor's and PhD in Mechanical Engineering form Wayne State University and joined the University of Detroit Mercy in 2001. Currently, he is an associate professor whose areas of interest include acoustics, noise and vibration as well as design and entrepreneurship. He teaches dynamics, senior design, innovation and entrepreneurship, mechanical measurements, and NVH. His current research is focused on experimental work in the area of noise and acoustics. Dr. Rayess has been very active in recent efforts to bring entrepreneurship to engineering and other technical programs at the university.

Nassif Rayess has applied for and been awarded 1 grant

  • Development of the Interdisciplinary Design, Entrepreneurship and Service (IDEAS) Course

    Began May, 2006 and ended September, 2007

    This proposal advocates the creation of the Interdisciplinary Design, Entrepreneurship and Service (IDEAS) course at the University of Detroit Mercy (UDM). This is a junior year project involving student team members from architecture, business, digital media and engineering that will address critical needs of the people of Detroit. The course will emphasize creativity, interdisciplinary cooperation, entrepreneurship and community service. Eight faculty members and two administrators will participate in the course, providing a diverse set of perspectives on such topics as creativity and design and knowledge of areas like teamwork, business planning, engineering, etc. This course has been enthusiastically supported by the faculty involved and by their respective chairs and deans. The community based projects will ensure strong and lasting commitment from UDM and will enable it to better serve the students and the community. The course will be piloted in the fall of 2006 with subsequent offering every fall thereafter. The groups will be called E-Teams, given ownership of their work and required to create a business case at the end of the semester. Strong teams with novel technology will be encouraged to apply for an Advanced E-Team at the end of the semester (December deadline).

    With the team:

    • Nassif Rayess
    • Dr. Barbara Schirmer Provost and Academic V ice President, University of Detroit Mercy
    • Dr. Michael Jenkins Professor and Chair, Mechanical engineering, University of Detroit Mercy
    • Dr. Leo Hanifin Dean of the College of Engineering, University of Detroit Mercy

Chanda Turner

Chanda Turner is a second-year MIA student in the School of International Affairs at Penn State University, where her concentration is science, technology and the developing world. Prior to attending Penn State University, Chanda graduated with a BS in Biology from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University and a MS in Biomedical Engineering from Wayne State University. While studying biomedical engineering, she focused her academic research in the area of smooth muscle tissue engineering. As a research assistant at Wake Forest University, she worked in the areas of regenerative medicine and smooth muscle physiology. In addition to her laboratory experience, Chanda has been involved in various international development projects, including clean water development and widow care in Nigeria and Benin as well as telemedicine implementation in rural Kenya.

Camille George

Camille George is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering specializing in Thermodynamics at the University of St. Thomas. She is interested in sustainable engineering and has developed collaborative international service learning projects in the Caribbean and West Africa.

Alexander Petroff

Alexander Petroff graduated from Hampshire College in 2006 with a BA in Development Economics, shortly after founding Working Villages International in 2005. Having traveled throughout sub-Saharan Africa, he decided to begin building villages in the Ruzizi Valley region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, and has been working on development in that region ever since.

Pete Schwartz

Pete Schwartz's student research includes concentrated solar power, passive solar heating, electric transportation, and financial analysis of energy transitions. He has revised and teaches Energy, Society, and the Environment (PSc-320) and classes dedicated to the development of appropriate technologies for impoverished communities (UNIV-391 and UNIV-X492). He taught high school in the Fiji Islands and Bakersfield, and studied fusion energy, molecular order on surfaces, and nanotechnology before taking a sabbatical with Berkeley's Energy and Resource Group and transitioning to the field of sustainability. His areas of specialty are concentrated solar power and analysis of alternative automobile fuels.