Pirates Pitch: An Incubator for Passion, Courage, and Grit

Four outstanding Seton Hall University student entrepreneurs pitched their business ideas to compete for over $16,000 in venture capital seed funding at the 11th annual Pirates Pitch Startup Contest sponsored by the Stillman School of Business’ Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. The April 7th virtual event was a huge success that attracted over 250 viewers.

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Artificial Intelligence: A Challenge on Diversity in Today’s Technology-Powered World

“Being in a minority, even in a minority of one, did not make you mad. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.” ― George Orwell, 1984

George Orwell’s quote has never been more relevant than today. Even though something may feel uncomfortable to talk about, that does not make it untrue. Change can start with a single voice creating a ripple effect. Being the only one, does not mean that what you have to say is any less important even if it feels like the whole world is against you.

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Could Facial Recognition Be Perpetuating Society’s Biases?

Research has found that certain facial-recognition software perpetuates society’s existing inequities based on race, class, and gender. Joy Buolamwini, an M.I.T. Media Lab researcher, discovered that the facial-recognition algorithm she was working on could not detect her face – until she put on a white mask. She soon realized that many artificial-intelligence programs are trained to identify patterns using data sets that skew light-skinned and male results. Buolamwini stated, “When you think of A.I, it’s forward-looking, but A.I. is based on data, and data is a reflection of our history.”

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The Opioid Crisis: Another Pandemic Sweeping the Nation

For quite some time, Purdue Pharma has been regarded as a symbol of corporations profiting from America’s deadly addiction to opioid painkillers. Recently, the Justice Department announced a historic $8.3 billion settlement with the company. This fine is the largest such settlement ever reached with a pharmaceutical company. As part of the agreement, Purdue Pharma has agreed to plead guilty to three felonies. However, state authorities and several families who have lost loved ones to killer drugs believe that the Justice Department’s terms, including a $225 million civil settlement with the billionaire Sackler family that once ran the firm, are far too lenient.

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