By Alexis Savary
Every year, the College of Business hosts a Trade Fair, where students from the Entrepreneurship class are given the opportunity to create a new business or product plan for society. These projects, which are worked on throughout the semester, allow students to experience some of the challenges and hardships of planning a new business.
This year, eight groups were formed into various different types of startup companies. These groups then competed at the Trade Fair to win the investments of peers and faculty.
There were four basic criteria for the voting process. Visitors were asked to distribute 100 “investment dollars,” in the form of points, based upon the need or potential of the product/service, the likelihood of its impact, the sustainability of business model and each team’s enthusiasm to whichever team they desired.
GameOn is a company that plans to impact the athletic community through an app, which could be used to schedule and find recreational games and leagues in the nearby area. The app features a general newsfeed and the ability to filter through posts in order to create a user-friendly platform.
DSM Golf is a business plan that is intending to impact the tourism of Leavenworth, WA. This business would allow customers to enjoy disc golf, foot golf—a variation similar to soccer— and miniature golf.
Tyler Siedenburg, a member of the group, described DSM Golf as branching into a whole new avenue of tourism.
“DSM Golf is fun. [It is] the jewel of golf in Leavenworth,” Siedenburg said.
Boxed Fresh is a website that allows customers to interact with local businesses and farmers to find the freshest products. Essentially, the company can be described as a boxed farmer’s market because its customers would be given the opportunity to choose items specifically available from businesses nearby.
NU Games is a game developing company that intends to integrate education into the fun of board and card games. The educational aspect of this company would allow users to simultaneously have fun while learning about various different historic periods or concepts. This company is planning to release products next year.
Gravity VR hopes to eliminate the limitations of travel. Intended primarily for hospitals and nursing homes, Gravity VR plans to use virtual reality technology and headsets to allow customers the opportunity to continue exploring and traveling the world from the comfort of their home or hospital room.
Music Industry Connect (MIC) is an app for all types of musicians. It is designed to create opportunities for musicians to connect with each other to fill spots in a gig or to collaborate on a project. The app also features a digital marketplace where people can buy and sell equipment and merchandise. Alex DePolo, a member of the group, explained that their company tried to incorporate all that a musician would need to be successful in the music industry.
“No app currently meets all these needs,” DePolo said.
The Nest is a gym company that emphasizes health and community in a family lifestyle. This gym would create a spa-like atmosphere for parents and children, where families can get either a break from each other or grow together with the benefits of exercise and self-care. The gym would also feature a juice bar and sell of essential oils for its members.
Lastly, Church Perch is an app created for the purpose of finding local churches without the hassle of traveling all around and spending weeks or months looking for a church. Church Perch has numerous filters that allows consumers to learn highlights of each church and experience clips of a typical Sunday service.
Each group competed for a series of awards including the People’s Choice Award and the Shark Tank Award. Following the event, Assistant Professor in the College of Business Dr. Tony Pizelo and Dr. Teresa Gillespie, who is the Dean of the College of Business, announced the winners in class on Monday, Nov. 19.
Boxed Fresh received the People’s Choice Award, Music Industry Connect (MIC) won the Shark Tank Award and there was a tie for second place in both categories between Gravity VR and DSM golf.
Pizelo expressed his appreciation for each group’s contributions and hard work throughout the semester. Gillespie also commented on the benefits of entrepreneurship, which include the confidence to turn a dream into a job and the ability to understand the process of going about that if necessary later in life.