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Department of Communications/
News Bureau
22 Davis Hall, 10 Lippitt Road, Kingston, RI 0288
Phone: 401-874-2116 Fax: 401-874-7872

Media Contact: Todd McLeish 401-874-7892

Entrepreneurship lecture highlights
URI Engineering Alumni Day Oct. 10

KINGSTON, R.I. -- September 29, 2003 -- Michael McMahon, executive director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corp., will be the featured speaker during the University of Rhode Island’s Engineering Alumni Day on Friday, Oct. 10 at 1:30 p.m.

Entitled "What Makes a Great Entrepreneur," the talk is the inaugural lecture in the URI College of Engineering’s Anthony Risica Endowed Lecture Series in Engineering Entrepreneurship, which is named for the 1978 URI graduate who helped form two start-up companies, Sonus Networks and Arris Networks.

The event is free and open to the public and will be held in Cherry Auditorium in the Kirk Technology Building on URI’s Kingston Campus.

McMahon has 32 years experience dealing with venture capital, private equity and investment banking activities. He is a founder and partner of RockPort Capital Partners, a $100 million business focused on venture capital investment opportunities in the energy, power, environmental and engineered material sectors. He previously served as a managing director and head of the global energy investment banking departments at Lehman Brothers and Salomon Brothers.

"This is our first Engineering Alumni Day, and we’re looking forward to reconnecting with a number of alumni who haven’t been back to campus for a while or who want to revisit their old stomping grounds," said College of Engineering Dean Bahram Nassersharif. "It will be a fun day of renewing friendships and recalling fond memories of URI and the College of Engineering. And since Homecoming is the next day, our alumni have even more reason to return to campus for the weekend."

In addition to the lecture, Engineering Alumni Day also includes a scholarship breakfast at 7 a.m., continuously running campus tours and an open house in the engineering classrooms between 8 and 10:30 a.m., dedication of the Engineering Endowment Wall at 10:30 a.m., an alumni luncheon at 11:45 a.m., and an open house in each of the University’s engineering departments from 2:30 to 5 p.m.

"The College of Engineering has more than 100 endowments named in honor of alumni and friends of the college, so we are dedicating an Endowment Wall on Alumni Day to recognize those donors who are providing scholarships and other funds to support our academic programs and research activities," Nassersharif said.

For more information about Engineering Alumni Day or to register for the luncheon, call Ruth Gormly at 401-874-2186 or email

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Page last revised Monday, September 29, 2003 .