On Nov. 17, the final 18 contestants pitched their start-up ideas to seven judges in hopes of winning Rowan’s Idea Challenge. As previously reported, the Idea Challenge is a way for students to get funding for their startups. Each group consisted of students from all different colleges on campus. Every business was unique and most of them had plans that would benefit Rowan’s campus.
The first place winners were Andrew Graham, a senior business major, and Cole Robertson, computer engineering major. Their start-up business is called Market 4 Books. Their business would allow students to safely and easily trade and up-sell textbooks on campus. The partners were very excited about their win.
“We have a meeting on Wednesday at 5 p.m.,” Graham said when asked about when his business will be starting up. “I’ve only been working on it for this semester.”
The partners will use their $4,000 grand prize to help fund their business and hopefully bring it to Rowan as well as other college campuses in the future.
The second place winners were a larger group of five students. Greg Case, senior business major, presented the idea of Smart Bionics. He explained their idea as a new type of robotic arms that would be used by amputees. The judges asked about why they chose the arm instead of an easier limb like the leg or foot.
“There’s already technology out there for that. This is new and hasn’t been done yet,” Case said.
They took home a prize of $2,500 to add to the funding money they have been given from the National Science Foundation to further their idea.
The third place winners presented another idea that would benefit the students of Rowan. Kristian Reed, junior business major, presented the idea of ID-Bands. ID-Bands are a product for all the students who have ever lost, broken or had their student ID’s stolen. Their idea is a wristband ID system that would replace the Rowan cards students are issued on campus.
According to the group, it would be easier to keep track of and have all of the student’s information programmed in it. It would be easier to open the doors on campus when students are carrying in armfuls of things. They also would not have to go searching through their bag in order to find the tiny little card. Their check of $1,000 will help their business get ID-Bands to all the students on Rowan’s campus and soon campuses across the country.
The 2017 Rowan Idea Challenge produced a new batch of winners in many different fields. The winners came from several different colleges at the school, across a wide variety of fields. And all were able to present in a way that helped showcase their projects.
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