3 Student Enterprise Pitches Get Once-a-year University student Entrepreneurship Contest

Three Georgetown College business owners tied for very first position at this year’s student enterprise pitch levels of competition.

The Bark Tank level of competition, which took put nearly Oct. 27, seeks to financially assistance business enterprise ventures designed by Georgetown business owners, equally undergraduate and graduate, by enabling college students to pitch their business enterprise suggestions for a prospect to win up to $30,000 in prize revenue. 

Not like preceding several years, three ventures tied for initially spot in this year’s opposition: KnoNap, Button Helper and Venture Olas. Each individual took house $30,000 in prize revenue.

MAGGIE CHEN/THE HOYA | This year’s winners of the yearly Bark Tank business enterprise competitors include a cocktail napkin that detects rape prescription drugs in drinks and quick-clasp clothes buttons.

KnoNap, started by Danya Sherman (GRD ’21) in 2017, operates to educate pupils about and advocate in opposition to drug-facilitated sexual assault. 

“We empower persons in opposition to consume spiking by entry to discreet, gender-inclusive, transportable detection units that examination for unique date-rape drug existence,” Sherman wrote in an electronic mail to The Hoya.

Sherman has spoken and pitched to international audiences about her business enterprise, which has allowed her to witness how vital her small business is to a lot of people today. She has represented the United States at the 2018 G20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and the 2019 GES Summit in the Hague. 

“After pitches or shows, I have typically been approached by people today who share with me their ordeals with drink spiking and or sexual violence,” Sherman wrote. “To me, these discussions reaffirm the relevance of KnoNap and the dialogue we are setting up together with KnoNap’s existence.”

Sherman plans on employing the prize money to progress her organization by finalizing the exploration growth and original manufacturing operate of KnoNap’s item, a cocktail napkin that detects day-rape medications in beverages.

Button Helper, started by Robert Bolen (MSB ’20), aims to support disabled persons to dress them selves with magnetic buttons. 

Project Olas, which was founded by Rebecca Cox (SFS ’23), gives conversational Spanish tutoring taught by mothers dwelling in close proximity to Guatemala City’s premier landfill. Undertaking Olas will help handle two complications, in accordance to Cox.

“We assistance moms in the [Guatemala City garbage dump] entry safe and sound and sustainable perform in which they receive far more in just one hour than what they would generally earn in a day,” Cox wrote in an e mail to The Hoya. “And we supply Spanish pupils the conversational observe which is hard to get with out likely overseas.”

The coronavirus pandemic has established issues for Job Olas, specifically since everything is on the internet and demands a respectable knowledge of technological know-how, according to Cox. The funds the job received will enable gasoline their efforts. 

“Previously we had been bootstrapping wholly on $10,000 from the Georgetown Entrepreneurship Challenge. Now we can develop our access substantially, and develop significantly a lot quicker than we had anticipated,” she wrote.

The competition and prize revenue is supported by Ted Leonsis (CAS ’77), founder, bulk proprietor, chairman and CEO of Monumental Sports activities & Amusement, a Washington, D.C. corporation that markets stay occasions. 

While this year’s competitiveness was held just about for the reason that of the coronavirus pandemic, the celebration was not only a success, but the very best celebration considering the fact that Bark Tank was introduced 4 yrs in the past,  in accordance to Jeff Reid, founding director of Georgetown Entrepreneurship Initiative.

“While we skipped out on owning the energy of a packed auditorium and some useful submit-function networking, we had been nonetheless equipped to knowledge the drama that will come with a significant stakes level of competition,” Reid wrote. “Ted Leonsis was so amazed, he messaged me in the middle of the party to offer extra prize funds to make certain every crew was rewarded.”

Reid said he admired this year’s business enterprise pitches, ones that he said were being focused on benefitting modern society, not just generating gains.

“Georgetown college students are leveraging entrepreneurship to address challenges and make the earth far better,” Reid wrote in an email to The Hoya. “This year’s Bark Tank winners are already earning a big difference in the globe.”