Multi-disciplinary design and entrepreneurship student Alex Carr had an idea for an innovative ski pole while backcountry skiing one day. He wanted to put tools inside the poles — but it wasn’t until he took the U’s Innovation Scholar class and met with Dave Morrison, an intellectual property librarian, that his idea started to become a reality and he launched Char Poles. The company provides poles for increased performance and functionality and recently started getting their first shipment from their Chinese manufacturer. “Everyone has an idea for a product, but most students don’t realize the resources available to them,” Carr said. Char Poles’ patented products offer unique features including universal camera mounts, screwdrivers, bottle openers and “Five Finger Grab” straps. More at charpoles.com.