Monday, April 23, 2018

UIS students part of first and third place teams at Campus 1871 startup competition

A group of four University of Illinois Springfield students took part in the fifth annual Campus 1871 event, a weekend-long initiative that simulates the realities of launching and running a startup company, in Chicago April 13-15, 2018.

The event, which is held once a year, includes hands-on training, workshops, mentorship and coaching, and culminates in a pitch competition – where participants can win a temporary membership at 1871.

UIS computer science graduate students Kazim Abbot of Dennery, St. Lucia; Agney Patel of Ahmedabad, India; Behrooz Moradi of Mashhad, Iran; and Derek Coppinger of Virden, Illinois spent the weekend in Chicago attending workshops, panel discussions and engaging with established entrepreneurs while working on a realistic business model that would be pitched to a panel of judges.

The winning team featured UIS student Kazim Abbot whose team created BRIDGE, a platform that that helps immigrants and refugees with STEM backgrounds find jobs in the United States.

The third-place team featured UIS students Agney Patel and Behrooz Moradoni who worked on an application called “Better Bet”, a platform that helps you make and track fun bets and wagers with friends.

The event brought students from more than 100 Chicago-area universities together to collaborate and share ideas.

Founded in 2012, 1871 was created to support Chicago’s digital startup community. Since that time, it has become the hub for the city’s thriving technology and entrepreneurial ecosystem. Located in The Merchandise Mart, 1871 is the home of more than 400 early-stage, high-growth digital startups.

For more information, contact Blake Wood, UIS assistant director of public relations, at 217/206-6716 or

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