All great inventions start off with a with a brilliant idea for a product to service the needs of the world, and anyone can be that person with an idea.
That’s the message that the Make a Pitch competition tries to give to students.
“Any student can have an idea,” Associate Director of Isabella Bank Institute for Entrepreneurship Robby Roberts said. “They don’t have to be a business or entrepreneurship major, just someone with an idea to share and looking to gain public speaking experience.”
The first prize winner receives $500, the second prize winner receives $100 and third prize winner gets $50.
Student Assistant for the IBIE Nathan Austin said the Make a Pitch competition gives a great initial fund for students to grow their ideas, but it’s not just about the money.
“The event is a great way for students to practice their public speaking as well as their ability to sell themselves or their idea,” Austin said. “The presentation skills that Make A Pitch can help a student develop are crucial for the future when they enter the real world and start their career.”
The students that get picked for the actual presentation of their ideas go before judges and speak about their product for three minutes, and then the judges have two minutes after to ask the students questions on their ideas.
Roberts said in the past there has been many interesting ideas from interactive dog parks to backyard Zambonis.
“The event has gone on for nearly a decade and we try and see if the products have been done before or just how differential a student can get,” Roberts said.
This event is open to all students and Austin said there are flyers hanging all over campus to try and get students interested.
“We try to encourage a diverse range of students outside the college of business to participate as well,” Austin said.
If any students have further questions about the event, Roberts suggests students to stop in the IBIE office to talk to someone about their concerns or get help with their ideas and public speaking practice.
“We are so welcoming and open,” Roberts said. “Students will walk in hanging their heads low and walk out with a whole new attitude and the skills to be ready to present themselves.”