A pair of Grove City College student entrepreneurs are going to Minnesota this week for a national business pitch competition with a prize package topping $215,000.
Sophomores Ethan David and Luke Gilligan are finalists in this year’s e-Fest, an undergraduate competition presented by the University of St. Thomas’ Schulze School of Entrepreneurship.
Their business venture, dubbed Resense, serves those with neurodegenerative diseases through their main product The Memory Box, a toolkit designed to bring comfort and joy for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia and their caregivers.
David, a double Entrepreneurship and Biblical and Religious Studies major from Mars, Pa., and Gilligan, an Entrepreneurship major from Fishers, Ind., came up with Resense in Lean Launchpad, a class taught by Yvonne English ’97, Professor of Practice, Entrepreneur in Residence and executive director of the College’s Center for Entrepreneurship + Innovation (E+I).
Just 25 teams out of nearly 100 entries were selected for an all-expenses paid trip to the e-Fest finals at the university’s Minneapolis campus April 28 to 30. There they will be able to network with other student entrepreneurs, attend workshops, advance their idea, and perhaps take home some startup cash.
David and Gilligan have drawn the attention of judges in previous business plan competitions with Resense. They performed well in Texas Christian University’s recent Neeley School of Business Values and Ventures Competition and were the only undergraduates to make the finals of Washington University’s Olin’s BIG IdeaBounce powered by Poets & Quants.
“This team has proven that they have a great concept on some of the biggest stages possible when it comes to entrepreneurship competitions, and as they have done so they have not let experiential learning take a back seat. I've watched them take the feedback they have received and use it to strengthen their idea in live-time, and that ability to pivot and adapt is going to take them very far, both in business and in life," said Logan Hammerschmitt ’16, E+I marketing and outreach coordinator.
Resense is part of E+I’s 2022 VentureLab program, an early-stage business and social enterprise idea feasibility lab that provides funding in the form of pre-approved expense reimbursement and guidance to accepted teams.
For more about The Center for E+I, visit gccentrepreneurship.com.