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Scholarship tests the waters of enterprise

Scholarship tests the waters of enterprise

Plans to turn an innovative water test into a commercial success have received a boost from a $20,000 research scholarship.

The Enterprise Scholarship has been awarded to UNITEC Master of Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship (MBIE) student Beth Colman, with half of the scholarship funded by the Government and the other half by the organisation the research is conducted for.

Ms Colman will spend the next two years investigating the market potential of Watercheck and Coliquick - testing kits that can identify dangerous water-borne bacteria - and she will also create a commercialisation plan for B2P Limited, the company that produces the kits. "I will look for improvements on the applications of the products and also identify other potential opportunities for new products."

The water kits are a breakthrough for a range of industries, she says, and have a potentially huge international market. "The main problem is traditional water testing takes a long time. These products allow groups such as bottling companies, breweries and marine industries to carry out water testing very quickly."

She applied for the Government scholarship with the backing of B2P Limited through UNITEC's Graduate School and says the structure of the MBIE programme will allow her to carry out the research.

"I am able to incorporate some of the course requirements of my masters into the research and I have the support of the UNITEC professors, who are monitoring my work and acting as mentors."

Ms Colman is the third MBIE student to be granted the Enterprise Scholarship in as many years.

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