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Endicott College Business Pitch Competition ‘Spark Tank’ Will Award $15,000 to Student Entrepreneurs

April 19, 2017

On Thursday, April 20th at 6pm, Endicott College will once again host ‘Spark Tank!’, its annual business plan pitch event where student businesses will compete to win $15,000. Four semi-finalist contestants will pitch their business live to a panel of judges in competition for the prize.

Co-sponsored by the Angle Center for Entrepreneurship and FUEL, the College’s student venture accelerator program, the event continues to get bigger, both in terms of its audience and prize money.  This year’s seed money comes through the generosity of a grant from the Cummings Foundation.

Kaitlyn McCarthy, a freshman, will be pitching Your Advocate, a business she created to help parents of special needs children effectively advocate within their child’s school system.  David Freeman will be presenting his non-profit, Crater Creations, a social startup already making an impact in Kenya by helping villages build educational programs and infrastructure.  Drew Benshoff, a junior, has launched Sneaker Front, an app that connects “sneakerheads” with limited-run sneakers.  Finally, Tom Helmonds, an MBA student at Endicott, will be looking for seed money to further his work on a commercially-viable extraction method for chitin.  Chitin is a highly-desired product for pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, water treatment and other uses.

“This year’s contenders are impressive and we are very proud of all four student businesses,” said Deirdre Sartorelli, director of the Angle Center for Entrepreneurship at Endicott College. “We are equally pleased that three very exceptional entrepreneurs have agreed to be judges for the competition. Two of this year’s judges have been involved in MassChallenge in the past.  Our third is currently working at a startup, Cuseum, which has been profiled in the New York Times, Fast Company and the Boston Globe.  The fact that our program attracts entrepreneurs of this caliber is a sign that Endicott’s entrepreneurship program is gaining regional attention.”

Doors open at 5:30pm at Endicott’s Rose Performance Hall and the event begins at 6:00pm.  A special intermission show will be put on by Ingrid Lo and Kam Khun, both students at the College.

To register for the event, the Eventbrite link is: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ecfuels-spark-tank-tickets-33596663525.

For more information, call the Center’s director at 978-998-7740.

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