Thursday, December 2, 2021

The University of Iowa John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center announced their Fall Innovation Challenge Awards, which included two dentistry-related projects. These awards are aimed at identifying and supporting the most innovative and entrepreneurial projects in a university-wide competition.

Salah Abuhammoud

In the technology category for faculty, Salah Abuhammoud, clinical assistant professor of prosthodontics, and August De Oliveira earned second place and an award of $10,000 for their proposal developing a novel dental surgical system called X-Ray Vision. X-Ray Vision is a dental image-guided surgery system for placing dental implants safely and accurately on patients using augmented reality. 

Melika Farshad, an associate in Dental Clinic Administration, won the award for Best Social Impact, which carries a $2,000 award for the online and computer-based application WeMigrate. WeMigrate is an online tool that helps international students and other immigrants stay on top of their visa and immigration requirements and deadlines, whether those requirements relate to their program of study or their country of origin. The tool helps from a person's first United States embassy appointment to Optional Practical Training, H-1B, and Green Card and citizenship application. It also provides resources and updates along the way while connecting users with immigration attorneys who have successfully handled similar cases on an as needed basis. 

This is the second year in a row that dentistry was well-represented at the Fall Innovation Challenge awards, with Amira Elgreatly and Ahmed Mahrous winning a Judge's Choice award for their elevator pitch in 2020.