May 17, 2012
Some HCC Students Opt to be Entrepreneurs Amidst Economic Slowdown
(Columbia, MD) – Never Get a Real Job Author Scott Gerber says 2012 is “The Year of The Entrepreneur” and agreeing would probably be the wealthy financiers backing business-hopefuls on the hit TV show “Shark Tank.” Today’s economic slowdown has created fertile ground for reinventing the concept of work, while stimulating the desire in a number of students to create their own income. Following a noticeable start-up trend, 13 Howard Community College students will compete in a three-to-five minute beat-the-clock style “Rocket Marketing” competition and will pitch their unique business concepts to a juried panel on Thursday, May 17, at 5:30 p.m. in The Rouse Company Foundation Student Services Hall (Room 400). First and second prize winners will receive cash prizes of $500 and $250, which have been donated by the business community in Columbia, MD.
Among the many business ideas to be pitched by HCC students are the following:
- The Betheir Bear: As a charitable organization that eases the pain of long distance relationships, the Betheir Bear provides face time or a Web chat with a loved one. The bear’s face is replaced with an iPhone, allowing personable video communication. The bear, which can be used by children when parents are away and/or by those engaged in long-distance relationships, is equipped with a removable face, two speakers and iPod charging dock.
- College Exchange: Knowing that “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” College Exchange lets college students earn extra money by matching buyers with sellers of unwanted or unneeded goods.
- Nuts 2.0: Nuts 2.0 is a shelled peanut product where both nut and shell can be consumed.
- The Prouduce Organization: The Prouduce Organization, based on the concept of “waste not, want not,” aims to eliminate hunger in the United States. The business identifies and obtains food before it goes to waste and distributes it to the hungry.
During the evening, visual displays of other start-up businesses will be also be available for audience viewing.
Approximately 1/3 of the students in the Rocket Marketing competition typically go on to the next phase of the program at the college’s Center for Entrepreneurial & Business Excellence (CEBE). At CEBE, students take the businesses pitched in the competition to the next level:
- Entrepreneurs receive one-on-one guidance and support from a business coach who provides resource coordination, motivation and accountability.
- Classes are designed to meet the entrepreneur’s needs and include experiential learning, mentoring and team project work.
- Business space is even provided, which includes basic office equipment, meeting space, and more.
The Center for Entrepreneurial & Business Excellence at Howard Community College helps aspiring and existing business owners and students develop themselves and their businesses by utilizing the Center’s programs, services, and resources.
Howard Community College (HCC) is a publicly funded two-year community college serving the educational needs of the citizens and employers in Howard County, Maryland since 1970. With its slogan, “You Can Get There from Here,” the college has forged a variety of partnerships to offer career and transfer programs to over 30,000 students annually at its main campus in Columbia, the Ecker Business Training Center, and Laurel College Center. Located midway between two major metropolitan areas, Washington DC and Baltimore, MD, Howard Community College is an affordable, community-based institution that has long been recognized for its ability to inspire learning, and the lifelong pursuit of personal and professional goals. Among its many awards is the prestigious U.S. Senate Productivity Award for organizational performance excellence.