Students Pitch to Potential Investors at Round One
This week, Alpha Kappa Psi (AKPsi) and Startup Exchange are partnering to host an event based on ABC’s Shark Tank. Round One is an entrepreneurship competition for students at Tech to pitch business ideas to investors. The final round takes place Saturday, April 8, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at The Garage in Tech Square.
Twenty-six teams applied for the competition and eight teams were selected to advance to a mentorship phase. The eight teams presented their ideas and worked with mentors from Tech’s Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC) and the Atlanta Tech Village. From there, the field narrowed to four finalists who will participate in the investment phase on Saturday: FireHUD, Lean Basketball Analytics, TINA, and Hera Health Solutions.
The FireHUD team consists of firefighter David Phillips, fourth-year computer engineering major Zack Braun, fourth-year electrical engineering major Tyler Sisk, and MBA student Chris Ward. Their team provides a real-time monitoring system and Head UP Display that communicates biometric environmental data to firefighters and outside officials. The group also won first place at the 2016 InVenture Prize.
Sarah Bush, Ali Kight, Elise Pippert, and Janay Harris — all biomedical engineering majors — have developed TINA. TINA is a tampon insertion aid that is designed to restore independence and discretion to women with limited hand mobility.
Lean Basketball Analytics was created by Chris Mast, a first-year master’s in analytics student. Lean Basketball Analytics seeks to create a class of progressive basketball coaches who use analytics and has options for media and gaming markets.
Hera Health was created by a team of biomedical engineers including fourth-year students Idicula Mathew, Garret Whitfield, and Aditya Muralidhar, fifth-year student Mi Hyun Choi, and third-year student Allie Johnson. Hera Health Solutions is developing a resorbable contraceptive implant that will eliminate painful removal surgery for women worldwide.
The event is free and open to the public, and students can register to attend on the Round One website.
“Round One will provide the audience with an opportunity to see what the startup process is like,” said Alek Wobeck, a third-year business major and vice president of professional planning for AKPsi. “It’s useful to see how ideas are developing and what type of questions investors will ask.”
Read more about the teams here (pdf).
AKPsi — a co-ed professional business fraternity — began in 1904 on the principles of brotherhood, unity, service, integrity, and knowledge. Its goal is to educate members and the public to appreciate and demand higher ideals in business and to further the individual welfare of members during college and beyond.
Tech’s chapter began in 1962 and now has 80 active members.
“Through AKPsi, I’ve interacted with people from all majors and backgrounds,” said Divya Achtani, a fourth-year industrial engineering major and the group’s executive vice president. “I have been able to grow with my friends and give back to a community that I care about.”
Achtani rushed during the fall of her first year at Tech while Wobeck rushed during the fall of his second year. Both have enjoyed the networking opportunities, brotherhood, and career development.
“AKPsi has given me opportunities for high-level networking,” Wobeck said. “It has allowed me to push myself outside of my comfort zone to work with distinguished professionals.”
AKPsi aims to help members achieve their career goals, develop their talents, and build their professional networks. The organization has events throughout the year including Round One, a Business Forum, a Case Competition, and Go Baby Go. For more information on each event, visit the AKPsi website.
“We strive to develop leaders throughout Georgia Tech’s campus through our events,” Achtani said.
AKPsi also partners with campus organizations such as the Student Center Programs Council, Georgia Tech Housing, the Society of Women Engineers, and the Undergraduate Consulting Club to host professional and philanthropic activities for the entire Tech community.