University of Iowa hosts multiple competitions for student entrepreneurs

Winners from the second night of the 2019 Spring IdeaStorm. (Photo courtesy of University of Iowa).

Over the last month, the University of Iowa (UI) held two different pitch competions—the Spring 2019 IdeaStorm and the Iowa Startup Games.

Spring 2019 IdeaStorm

The competition was open to all UI students and hosted over 250 students from across all areas of study on campus. Students pitched their business ideas in under two minutes with the event taking place across the span of four days each at different campus locations.

A total of 118 students pitched their ideas in February at four different competitions, each with a different theme—health initiatives, creative concepts, common good and consumer solutions.

The winners of each category received $500 and are listed below:

Health Initiatives
Scott Tribbey for Spine Buddy, which provides a way for adolescents to feel comfortable in a scoliosis brace while improving their spine.

Creative Concepts
Lance Junck for Open Mic, an online platform that directly connects theater teachers with emerging playwrights looking to get their work produced. 

Common Good
Andrea Ford for her idea of a mental health and addiction center that acquires warehouse space as housing and skill training for homeless people.

Consumer Solutions
Bryce Prokof for Amateur Caddie, a golf accessory holder/organizer that clips to the outside of a golf bag to allow easier access to the essentials golfers need during their round.

Iowa Startup Games

Iowa Startup Games is a three-day event where students, from all areas of study, pitch their ideas to have an impact. The event started with 74 participants pitching 30 ideas. From those pitches, 10 ideas were selected by the students to move forward and form into teams

Students started planning Friday night for their business ideas and spent all day Saturday assigning roles, doing research, customer discovery and meeting with business coaches.

The top three teams were awarded cash prizes, as well as a Judge’s Choice and audience selected People’s Choice.

1st Place ($1,000.00) | Clean Slate – Service analyzing online presence of new hires to find the right fit for employers

  • Lance Junck, English & Creative Writing
  • Rakshud Daver, Neuroscience
  • Daniel Lopez, Marketing
  • Tara Bendre, Marketing
  • Madi Hayes, Enterprise Leadership

2nd Place ($750.00) | Urbaniste – Public engagement app focusing on spread of local governmental issues and information

  • Anshuman Sahu, Mechanical Engineering
  • Vern Ancelet, Art
  • Emily Legel, Urban and Regional Planning
  • Chukwuebuka Ogwo, Oral Science PhD

3rd Place ($500.00) |  Slingshot – Soft skill development for today’s job market

  • Hector Trejo Peno, Economics
  • Nicholas Dusold, Enterprise Leadership
  • Jesse Davis, Enterprise Leadership
  • Hyunki Min, Economics, PhD
  • Alex Borchers, Enterprise Leadership

Judges Choice ($500.00) | bee’s Honey – Infused honey for healthier lifestyles          

  • Nathan Davidson, Management
  • Paul Flanders, Chemical Engineering
  • Justin Morrison, Pre-Business

People’s Choice ($250.00) | Aesop – Learning language through immersive storytelling program

  •  Many Archer, Journalism
  • Isabelle TeDuits, Marketing
  • Joshua Nichols, Enterprise Leadership
  • Nate Le Sage, Computer Science
  • Austin Johnson, Business

Apply now for the Iowa JPEC Business Model Competition

The Iowa JPEC Business Model Competition is set to take place March 26 – 27, 2019. The Business Model Competition will allow students from the University of Iowa to present their business to judges for the opportunity to win prize money.

A total of $50,000 in cash prizes will be awarded throughout the two-day competition.

Applications are due by March 20.