The fourth annual Clarion University BizPitch Competition was held Nov. 17 in Suites on Main North Movie Theater. The competition awarded $3,250 to three students for their business pitch. Prizes were $1,500 for first place, $1,000 for second place, $500 for third place, and a fan favorite award of $250. A total of four students competed in the final round for a chance to win cash prizes.
Students from all majors were encouraged to participate and could enter solo or in teams of no more than four, and presented their five- to seven-minute business pitch to a panel of judges. The competition was open to part-time and full-time students enrolled in the fall semester at Clarion University. Sponsors of the event were Scott and Pamela Kroh, the Kroh family, and Robindale Energy, Tom Bowman and Bowman and Company, Clarion University Interhall Council, and First United National Bank.
Marcus Ryan, a senior business management major, won first place and fan favorite for a total of $1,750. His business, Skoolie City, is contract-work based business that facilitates the remodeling of old school buses into renovated motor homes. With help from Skoolie City, customers will have their dream motorhome at a very affordable price.
Indya Durham, a sophomore communications major, whose business is an online cosmetic store that features a variety of high-quality and affordable products, won $1,000 for second place. The business's mission has been to give customers a wellness experience that goes beyond face value.
Shamyia Johnson, a junior early childhood education major, won $500 for third place with her business in which she creates one-of-a-kind works of art for customers and creates works of art by commission.
All student participants were assisted by the Clarion University Small Business Development Center in conjunction with the Entrepreneurial Leadership Center. The SBDC and ELC assists entrepreneurs and business owners by helping them develop the planning, management and financial skills necessary to make their business thrive. The one-on-one management consulting emphasizes education and guidance in finding practical solutions to business problems.
Consulting is confidential and provided at no charge by a staff of skilled professionals. Areas of consulting include but are not limited to: management and marketing assistance, business planning, loan packaging, financial analysis, procurement, human resources and environmental management.
Funding for the Small Business Development Center is provided by Clarion University of Pennsylvania, the Small Business Administration and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, enabling the SBDC to provide its services at no cost.
Students are encouraged to continue interactions with the SBDC and ELC to develop and refine their innovative ideas and business plans.