May 11, 2021
Two St. Bonaventure University students and their teammates from University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth won individual category awards in the 2021 Marine Energy Collegiate Competition held virtually at the end of April.
Team members from St. Bonaventure include Alec Peinkofer of Bradford, Pennsylvania, a senior who is expected to receive his MBA in August, and Darion Gregory, an environmental studies major from Smethport, Pennsylvania, who is completing his sophomore
Sponsored by the Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, the Marine Energy Collegiate Competition challenges students from around the globe to develop ways in which to advance what’s known as the blue economy
— preserving the health of ocean ecosystems while creating jobs and economic growth tied to ocean resources.
The St. Bonaventure/UMass Dartmouth team proposal involved a means of providing sustainable energy to off-shore agriculture farms by substituting diesel generators with vertical axis wind turbines and ocean current turbines housed together on floating
The team won in the Best Build and Best Pitch categories, said Dr. Konrad Jamro, associate professor of management at St. Bonaventure, who served as academic adviser to the team for a similar event, Techstars Startup Weekend, leading up to the MECC competition.
“The Best Pitch related to a 25-minute presentation in front of judges by Alec, Darion and UMass Dartmouth student Sarah Dulac,” said Jamro. “It included a business plan, technical details and a summary of outreach activities done to
spread the word about the blue economy.”
The Best Build category award related to technical design and testing, which was undertaken by UMass Dartmouth students.
“I couldn’t be prouder of our students for their hard work and creativity,” said Jamro. “They not only studied and analyzed existing resources, but also conducted dozens of interviews with various aqua-culture industry stakeholders
to create a business plan for a company producing floating platforms with wind and current turbines to power the blue economy. It’s quite an accomplishment to be singled out on the world stage.”
About the University: The nation’s first Franciscan university, St. Bonaventure University is a community committed to transforming the lives of our students inside and outside the classroom, inspiring in them a lifelong commitment to service and
citizenship. In 2020, St. Bonaventure was named the #2 regional university value in New York and #3 in the North by U.S. News and World Report.