Cal Poly CIE to Host Demo Day Entrepreneur Event on Sept. 13


Contact: Stephanie Zombek


Cal Poly’s top innovators showcase their startups after three months of intensive growth.

SAN LUIS OBISPO — The Cal Poly Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) will showcase seven startups at its annual Demo Day in-person at SLO Brew Rock and online via YouTube Live on Tuesday, Sept. 13.

The event culminates the CIE’s 2022 Summer Accelerator program, an intensive 13-week program that helps Cal Poly students and recent graduates develop their startup ideas into scalable businesses. Representatives from each startup will pitch their business ideas and present what they’ve accomplished with the help of dedicated CIE mentors and staff.

“This year’s cohort is coachable, curious, professional and eager to add their own chapters to Cal Poly and the CIE’s history of entrepreneurial success,” said Jose Huitron, the CIE’s director of student innovation programs who oversees program delivery and mentorship to student-led ventures. “I’m looking forward to Demo Day and the students showing the community what’s possible when you embrace entrepreneurship and innovation to bring ideas to life.”

The summer program provides teams with $10,000 in seed funding to build their startups, as well as access to mentorship from industry experts and tailored workshops that delve into the details of building a business. Demo Day will give these teams the opportunity to show how hard work and collaboration have prepared them to take their startups into the next stage.

The cohort includes a variety of industries and disciplines, from accessible technologies to menstrual comfort wear to firearm safety:

Cheekies designed a reusable, machine-washable and leak-proof menstrual short that provides comfort and protection during sleep. The startup was created by engineering management graduate student McCall Brinskele of Marin County and recent industrial engineering graduate Mariana Inofuentes of Denton, Texas.

Grip Safe is developing a patented firearm safety device that makes AR-15-style rifles secure for storage, transportation, and handling all through an interchangeable grip attachment. The startup team includes founder and CEO Shaun Tanaka, a public policy graduate student from Sherman Oaks, California, and engineering contractor Dylan DeFazio, a mechanical engineering junior from Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania.

Ryde Carpool is developing a social carpool marketplace for college students to buy and sell empty seats in each other’s vehicles. The startup was founded by computer science graduate student Emily Gavrilenko of Antioch, California, recent experience industry management graduate Johnny Morris of Berkeley, California, and computer science junior Josh Wong of San Francisco.

Sustainamade is using technology to reduce the amount of water, waste, transportation and labor needed to grow strawberries. The startup was founded by recent business administration graduate Corrine Cooper of Boulder, Colorado.

Venture.Rent is developing software to connect outdoor equipment rental shops and consumers. The startup was founded by Shubh Khandhadia, a business administration senior from Irvine, California.

— X-Adapt is creating a compact, capable and intuitive mobility device for people with disabilities. The startup was founded by Evan Lalanne, a manufacturing engineering senior from Arroyo Grande, California.

Demo Day general admission tickets to SLO Brew Rock are $10. In-person seating is limited. The event will also be livestreamed for those who register for virtual tickets. Register for tickets at

Demo Day is sponsored by Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati Professional Corp., a law firm specializing in business, securities and intellectual property law.


About the Cal Poly Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship:

The CIE opens a world of entrepreneurial opportunity to Cal Poly students, faculty and community members and promotes entrepreneurial activity and dialogue across the university and throughout San Luis Obispo County. For more information, visit


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