Darius Myers and Cody Scott won the Opportunity Quest 2015 with the grand prize of $1,000 plus an automatic entry in the top 20 in the Utah Entrepreneur Challenge. Their app, Hyde, is what led them to victory.
It all started with advertisement all over campus and on social media to attract students and have them join the Opportunity Quest. This competition fosters and promotes business growth at college and university level by giving students the opportunity to organize, direct, and present a business idea to a panel of judges.
Stacee Yardley McIff, Assistant Professor and Business Department Chair, explains why the Business Department puts this competition together: “Entrepreneurship is important – especially in rural communities. This is a great chance for the students to think about themselves as business owners and share their ideas.” She adds that “It is important for me to highlight that this is for every major on campus, and that everyone can be an entrepreneur.”
17 teams, with around 30 students in total, signed up for the first round presenting their business idea. Three rounds later, the number of groups had been cut down to five leaving only nine students left. On November 23, the awards banquet was held for the remaining participants and their families revealing the winners of the competition.
Myers and Scott got first place with their app, Hyde. They expressed themselves as feeling “really good” and “ecstatic” after getting their prize. ”It’s now or never. We have a great opportunity and will take advantage of it”
Their next step to get their product out in the business is fundraising. They are hoping to be able to push the app through different colleges and businesses throughout the United States.
(End story here. Put entire story on website.)
Sergio Arellano won second place and $500 with his app, Timepeace.
Arellano started his presentation asking how many owned a smartphone. The majority did, and he explained how his project would take advantage of that. His app can keep track of hours worked, people can check in when they start working, and the boss can be on vacation knowing who actually is working because of the GPS signal.
On third place winning $300 were Emma Stevens and Taylor Braithwaite with their idea, Memories for Generations.
Their project was about placing QR codes on gravestones. People would then be able to scan the code and be directed to a website with pictures, collages, and personal information about their loved one.
”Entrepreneurship is for everyone – no matter your background and circumstance,” Stacee McIff states.
Fourth place, and $200, was taken by Chad Boore, Connor Ashton, and Landry Thompson with their project, Hit N Run Food Truck.
Their idea was to start a food truck that would produce quick and easy food for people in the community. They would be selling quesadillas, soups, salad, and other things.
Fifth place and $100 was given to Taylor Braithwaite with his company, TT Photography and Videography.
He makes wedding videos for people and have clients finding contracts.
The Utah Entrepreneur Challenge is next step for some of the participants. The grand prize is $40,000, and all students can sign up – even if they did not participate in the Opportunity Quest. Registration begins in the winter. More information can be found at www.lassonde.utah.edu/uec.