Thousands of dollars were not being offered for the pitched ideas at the Davenport University Shark Tank experience, but students did get the thrill of being under pressure and learning how to sell an idea they are passionate about in a short period of time. West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science students also left with more confidence and understanding of how an idea must be thoroughly vetted and executed to receive attention.
It was a jumpstart into their Capstone Experience and helped them work quickly to solve a problem and on a much smaller scaler.
The 15 seniors who participated from WMAES are in their Capstone Experience class and are developing unique solutions to existing problems. Capstone projects take an entire year to complete research and solutions to something that they are passionate about.
This is similar to what the DU Shark Tank experience. They were asked to develop an idea for a product or service in education through a five criteria process.
- Product or service description
- Who is the target market for the product or service
- The needs this product or service satisfies
- Develop a communication plan (marketing)
- Thoroughly convince the investors that they should invest in this idea
“I know that a handful of the students left with a fresh boost of confidence because they came up with an incredible service related to education, Leanne DeYoung, a teacher at WMAES, said. “They enjoyed working under pressure and it was fun to see their creativity and excitement grow throughout the experience.”
“We hope to be part of this program again next year as it helps start our students to seriously think about their capstone project and what difference they can make in the world with their new and innovative ideas,” Josh Miller, Dean of Students at WMAES, said.