Grove City College-anchored teams of young entrepreneurs took the top two spots at Techstars Startup Weekend Pittsburgh.
Startup Weekend is a 54-hour experiential education marathon and competition in which participants go from brainstorming on Friday night to presenting a solid business plans for working startups on Sunday.
The Center for Entrepreneurship + Innovation at Grove City College sent 28 students and two alumni to the competition Nov. 9 to 11 at AlphaLab in Pittsburgh. The College was represented on six of the nine teams that competed.
“Our students' continued success at high-profile entrepreneurship events such as Techstars Startup Weekend Pittsburgh speaks to the quality of their ideas and the power that they have to change the world with those ideas. We couldn't be prouder of all of the students who continue to represent Grove City College at events like this around the world,” Yvonne English ’97, executive director of the Center for E+I, said.
Five Grove City College students – Matthew Moody ‘22, Zach Hanson ‘22 Amanda Mayer ‘22, Garrett Jacobs ‘20, and Randall LaBrie ‘21 – and recent graduate Jordan Hörst ’18 were on the first place team. Their business idea is Cuts Coach, an app that bridges the communication gap between haircutters and clients. The app gives consumers options that allow them to select the hairstyle they want and provides a detailed description so they can confidently describe what they desire. The app also offers haircare products and creates revenue via ads for the niche market.
The second place team was comprised of eight Grove City College students: Alyssa Ward ‘21, Daniel Ford ‘21, Fisher Koons ‘22, Kenzie Klie ‘21, Joshua Tricarico ‘21, Liz Finnegan ‘21, Lizzy Higgins ‘21, and Dana Ross ’21. They worked on Abandon Outfitters, a clothing company that caters to people with conditions such as ALS, muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy or a traumatic brain injury that limits dexterity and makes getting dressed difficult.
Startup Weekend is all about “action, innovation, and education,” according to its organizers. Participants had the opportunity to collaborate outside of their regular networks, hear from industry leaders and entrepreneurs, test their ideas and hone their skills.