Mini Pitch George

 

Mini Pitch George

Saturday, March 23, 2024 | 11:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. | Duquès Hall & Funger Hall

The Mini Pitch George competition is a casual, community-oriented version of the fall Pitch George competition. It is one of GW's premier entrepreneurial initiatives organized by the GW Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence (CFEE).

  • The competition is exclusive to spring semester students enrolled in an entrepreneurship-related course (plus their partner, if applicable) at the George Washington University.

  • GW’s most innovative professors are our partners, integrating the competition into their course curriculum as an educational experience.

  • Students get live feedback from mentor-judges.

  • Bonus: the competition is excellent preparation for students entering GW's New Venture Competition (NVC).

This year's Mini Pitch George will be a hybrid event that will take place in person as well as virtually. The competition will consist of one round of pitches to a panel of judges. Winners will receive bragging rights, media coverage, in-kind prizes, and additional NVC-related opportunities.

 

Mini Pitch George Eligibility
  1. Your team must be enrolled in an entrepreneurship-related course at GWU.
  2. If you are enrolled in more than one entrepreneurial course, you may submit multiple ideas — however, you must fill out an individual application for each unique idea.
How Mini Pitch George Works
  1. Think of an idea and/or venture
  2. Attend the online information session via Zoom on January 31 at 6:00 p.m. ET
  3. Form a team of one to five members
  4. Submit the Mini Pitch George application
  5. Present your business pitch to a panel of judges
  6. Network with D.C.-area business moguls and have a lot of fun!

 

 

Past Winners

Meet the 2023 Winners

1st Place

  • Liquid Handling Robot

Runners Up

  • Kenny's Cheesecakes
  • WineNot!

 

First Place

Liquid Handling Robot
  • Daniel Liu Schmid, Undergraduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • Ruby Limanowski, Undergraduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • Orooluwa Emmanuel, Undergraduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • Helen Knight, Undergraduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • Joshua Welch, Undergraduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science
Liquid Handling Robot is a group of biomedical engineering students currently building a functional prototype of a parallelized computer-controlled robot for the handling of small live biological samples. Specifically, a robotic arm that moves in the X and Z directions that extracts and dispenses live samples from one row of a 96-well plate to another. The live samples are soft cell spheroids and may rupture easily; therefore, the purpose of our device is not only to extract, move, and dispense liquids, but do so with a delicate effort to not compromise sensitive samples. Our venture is represented by the six students developing the product; our client, Dr. Entcheva, requesting the device for her lab at the George Washington University; and our capstone professor. As of now, we have built our device and are in the process of testing it and refining the code. Our ambition as a venture is to finish developing the product and release it on the market for other labs to purchase and use.

Runners Up

Kenny's Cheesecakes
  • Esther Urios, Graduate, School of Business
  • Kenneth Smith, GW Husband
Kenny's Cheesecakes is a network of retail shops across the United States selling the authentic recipe of the Basque cheesecake and slight variations that have been acclaimed globally. The Basque cheesecake is different from the widely popular cheesecake in that it is made with various types of cheese, has a distinct slightly burnt flavor, and is cooked to perfection to have both solid edges and a gooey middle similar to that of a lava cake. Our network of shops will provide consumers with the opportunity to order fresh cakes as well as provide flavor variations of the traditional Basque cheesecake that have been developed all over the world.
WineNot!
  • Valeria Quan, Graduate, School of Business
  • Riko Aoki, Graduate, School of Business
  • Liza Lukina, Graduate, School of Business
  • Maukeha Sham Koua, Exchange Student, School of Business
WineNot! is an app that will have a comprehensive and intuitive wine list aggregated with a detailed description and key characteristics of each wine categorized by the restaurant's wine list. The initial target personas are wine lovers and restaurants/wineries. Through the app, users will be able to easily access the full list of wines available at a restaurant and learn the key characteristics. This will allow users to make a more informed decision when selecting a wine at a restaurant. The app’s algorithm will include features such as a recommendation algorithm that will highlight which wines on the list best match the user’s preference, along with a percentage that gauges the likelihood of being a good fit. Restaurants will benefit from users utilizing the app as it will increase their wine sales. A second feature in the app available for restaurants will be access to a short history of the wine which waiters/waitresses will be able to share with consumers who are wine enthusiasts.
Meet the 2022 Winners

1st Place

  • QResume
 

First Tier teams are awarded $300 and a certificate of accomplishment

2nd Place

  • Plane and Simple
  • Metawork
 

Second Tier teams are awarded $200 and a certificate of accomplishment

3rd Place

  • Different Trading Post
  • Creatorly
 

Third Tier teams are awarded $100 and a certificate of accomplishment

First Tier

QResume

QResume

  • Elizaveta Volkova, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Nick Green, Undergraduate, Elliott School of International Affairs
  • Luke Ames, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Jake Weintraub, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Ethan Sniderman, Undergraduate, Corcoran School of the Arts and Design

QResume is a digital passport app designed to allow students and professionals alike to store their accomplishments and professional certification in a singular digital wallet. In the wallet, each achievement and certification is stored as a presentable digital ticket that contains a title, a brief description of the ticket’s significance, and a QR code. For awards, the QR code can link to whatever the user needs, such as a PDF of the award or pictures from the event. For professional certificates, Digital’s QR code will directly link to a verification of the certificate by the issuer. This will allow the user to share their verified certifications with employers or government agencies.

Second Tier

Plane and Simple

Plane and Simple

  • Cat Oriel, Undergraduate, School of Media and Public Affairs
  • Punn Phentrakul, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Mary Anyakwo, Graduate, School of Business

From long airline check-ins, hectic security lines, changing regulation and delays, regardless of one’s travel expertise, airports make for a high-stress environment. Why have we accepted that air travel has to be a nightmare? While there are countless blog posts containing airport tips, there is a need for a centralized app where this information is curated, personalized and crowd-sourced in real-time. Our app, Plane & Simple, aims to help travelers of all backgrounds reach their destination in the most stress-free way possible and even have a bit of fun along the way! Given the fact that nearly two-thirds of travelers rely on mobile apps (Travel Agent Central), the market is ready for a product like this. While there are countless travel resources to help you once you arrive, Plane & Simple is here to remind travelers that it’s also about the journey, not just the destination.

Metawork

Metawork

  • Elenana Theodoratou, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Emma Rhodes, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Margot Rimbert, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Jessie Toh, Undergraduate, School of Business

During the pandemic, many companies had to stop their seminar trips and switch to an online modality mainly consisting of Zoom meetings lacking human interaction and leading to poorer concentration, performance and mental health of employees. Virtual reality being an essential part of our future, we want to leverage on this tool in order to provide seminars that would be more ludic and lead to more efficient team building. A seminar in the mountains, at the beach, or why not on Mars, accessible in just one click. The most efficient way to provide this service would be through a website and an application from which customers could directly send their requests and get in touch with our sales teams. The virtual reality equipment will then be sent to them with user instructions.This service could interest any company of any size willing to improve relations among their employees and create a healthy work environment.

Third Tier

Different Trading Post

Different Trading Post

  • Eva Cursley, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

Different Trading Post is an online store and marketplace offering a well-curated and non-gendered selection of embroidered and upcycled apparel. Our non-gendered approach — in conjunction with our commitment to social and environmental sustainability — is designed to appeal to a growing market of conscious young consumers, those who want to normalize difference.

Creatorly

Creatorly

  • Ashwath Narayanan, Undergraduate, School of Media and Public Affairs
  • Joseph Gurksky, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Apostolos Mihalis, Undergraduate, Milken Institute School of Public Health

Creators struggle with finding and building relationships with creators, especially in a COVID world. We’re aiming to change this by creating a physical space for creators to build relationships with each other and grow together. Existing companies in the market go to online platforms as the solution, yet 68% of marketers struggle with connecting with influencers. We believe a physical space will allow more interaction between the creators and better relationships. Our physical space will host a community of creators who will attend events, network, film content, and grow together. Over time our member-only community will also have access to other resources like editors, designers, press, and more that will allow them to pursue content creation full time.

 

Meet the 2021 Winners

1st Place

  • Tesfa Medical Center
  • W!PE
 

First Tier teams are awarded $300 and a certificate of accomplishment

2nd Place

  • Nanas
  • MELA
  • A Culture of Purpose
 

Second Tier teams are awarded $200 and a certificate of accomplishment

3rd Place

  • Poplight
  • Fun Finance
  • Devly
  • Digital Life Services
  • Buy from BIPOC
 

Third Tier teams are awarded $100 and a certificate of accomplishment

First Tier

Tesfa Medical Center

Tesfa Medical Center

  • Leelie Selassie, Graduate, School of Business
  • Jaime Sarmiento-Monroy, Graduate, School of Business
  • Brendan Jones, Graduate, School of Business

Tesfa Medical Center (TMC) is building the first-of-its-kind cancer center in Addis Abeba Ethiopia integrating mobile diagnostics, telehealth, and wrap-around outpatient oncology treatment services focused on breast and colon cancer aiming to improve outcomes for these two diseases in Ethiopia, where no such center exists.

W!PE

W!PE

  • Mariam Zara, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Emma Danziger, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Isabel Meizoso, Undergraduate, School of Business

W!PE is a smart reproductive wipe that offers an environmentally friendly, reliable and discrete alternative to current pregnancy tests.

Second Tier

Nanas

Nanas

  • Rahma Al-Naamani, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Tirzah Budiman, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Maddie Loder, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

Nanas is a sustainable venture that takes the leaves of pineapples, which would normally be thrown out post-harvest, and uses it to produce textile such as woven and knit fabric and/or vegan denim for players in the fashion industry looking for more sustainable materials to produce clothes.

MELA

MELA

  • Sophia Hardesty-Meteyer, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Zestiny Simmons, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Roslyn Davis, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

Our venture is called MELA, a natural, odor-resistant and hyperpigmentation-relieving deodorant. Unlike other natural deodorants on the market, MELA serves the dual purpose of working as both a natural deodorant, and a hyperpigmentation-relieving product. We intend to break into the natural-deodorant market with an original approach that specifically appeals to women with black or brown melanated skin, hence our name, MELA. During the customer discovery phase of our research, our target audience expressed their need for a natural deodorant that, unlike the current deodorants on the market, does not have a noticeable visibility on dark skin. When asked about their specific skin concerns, we found that hyperpigmentation was consistently the number one issue among these women. Taking all of that into account, MELA serves as the direct innovation to our target audience’s specific, distinctive needs, making it a necessary and novel product.

A Culture of Purpose

A Culture of Purpose

  • Nicholas Malloy, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Ross Hatley, Graduate, Elliott School of International Affairs
  • Poorvi Sahai, Graduate, School of Business

We are A Culture of Purpose, and we're fighting clothing waste by connecting thrift stores to ecommerce. We will develop Thrift stores’ online presence with our platform which will advertise and organize inventory for Thrift stores. Stores may directly upload their inventory to our online platform via a picture and QR code produced for each item which would directly link the website showing availability and orders. While traditional resale merchants and platforms are aimed at selling luxury goods for rip off prices, we are quite the opposite. We would rather target used dress clothes at a very low price for students or people bouncing around jobs who are going to interviews which require dress clothes. Revenue is obtained through service and transaction fees to the store and consumer for using our platform. Based on the constant increase in the thrifting market, this will create a reliable stream of profit. A Culture of Purpose has a cost advantage to competitors that will connect local consumers and traditional resale merchants. Using available outlets in a sustainable manner we are slowly working towards saving the planet and reducing waste while helping local businesses and providing clothes to those in need.

Third Tier

Poplight

Poplight

  • Jacob Dmitrovsky, Undergraduate, Corcoran School of the Arts and Design

Poplight is the world's first customizable, wall-mounted light available in timeless designs. Users can effortlessly “pop” and swap different fixtures to the Poplight base to create beautiful lighting for any space. Poplight is a tool and hardware free fixture that’s easy to install without damaging your walls.

Fun Finance

Fun Finance

  • Annia Ward, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Arjun Vijay, Undergraduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • Isis Loaiza, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Ahmad Lozi, Undergraduate, Elliott School of International Affairs

We often hear that private finance is rarely taught in schools. As a result, many students graduate high school without being completely financially literate. A study conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics found that roughly 1 in 5 15 year-old students do not understand basic finance concepts. Furthermore, at schools in which at least 75 percent of students were eligible for free or reduced-price lunch, just 3.9 percent of students were required to take a personal finance semester course to graduate, indicating the prevalence of this problem within low-income communities. Our venture, Fun Finance is a web/mobile app that aims to empower high school and college students by providing them with an easy-to-use and personalized financial education platform. Through Fun Finance, students not only gain the skills needed to make sound financial decisions, they will have the opportunity to practice the application of those skills. Our venture compensates for the lack of financial education in public school curricula, where the burden of financial stress will be significantly reduced among students.

Devly

Devly

  • Danny Nsouli, Graduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science
  • Paola Beltran Madrid, Graduate, Elliott School of International Affairs
  • Sanam Masroor, Graduate, School of Business
  • Jialiang Liang, Graduate, School of Engineering and Applied Science

Devly, by Devly Corp, is a user-friendly software created for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and its industry partners to facilitate and improve project planning, share knowledge and information for best practices, and streamline monitoring and evaluation of project activities at an industry level. The database will be a powerful research and learning tool that will provide users access to technical and programmatic documents for nearly all USAID projects over the past 50 years. This tool will improve communication amongst partners and competitors within the international development industry by allowing users to search for information using keyword identification and relevant filters, such as target country and technical areas. Devly will allow continuous learning and feedback necessary to work in challenging environments and optimize U.S. taxpayers’ money ensuring that USAID and its implementers learn from one another and aspire for innovative solutions.

Digital Life Services (DLS)

Digital Life Services (DLS)

  • Mitali Thepade, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Jayden Bourne, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
  • Anthony Lange, Undergraduate, Elliott School of International Affairs

Digital Life Services is centered around the needs of senior citizens. This platform will serve as a resource for promoting competency as related to health, technology, and the well being of senior citizens. Senior citizens have been outpaced by technological advancements. The gap in technical knowledge and familiarity between older and younger generations has resulted in the elderly being left behind. The COVID-19 pandemic has distanced them even further through isolation and not being able to connect with the world. This is a struggle that includes everything from workplaces, to shopping, to medical services. Equipping the older generation with technical skills is more important now than ever. We hope to create a platform built to address the unique challenges that senior citizens are facing during this unprecedented time. Through this platform we intend to enhance the lives of the elderly and those who are not familiar with the capabilities of technology. Our purpose is to educate and provide guidance/information to elderly populations who are not tech-savvy.

Buy from BIPOC (BFB)

Buy from BIPOC (BFB)

  • Jessa Davidson, Undergraduate, Elliott School of International Affairs
  • Nissrine Benhida, Undergraduate, School of Business
  • Hannah Popper, Undergraduate, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

Buy from BIPOC (BFB) is a free app available for download to users' mobile devices. The app is a platform that lists small businesses owned by black, indigenous, and people of color (also known as BIPOC). The app enables individuals to connect with, and shop from, solely BIPOC owned businesses. The app will act as the intermediary between customers and BIPOC business owners. BFB will be user-friendly and organized by industry through a sleek and simple interface. Features such as a search bar, filters, and sub-categorized lists will make users' shopping experience more convenient. Our service also offers an extension feature to be added to users' browsers in tandem with the app. This extension automatically filters google and other web searches to display BIPOC owned businesses first. The extension will give BFB a comparative advantage and further amplify BIPOC voices and products. BFB is a social venture to change the way you shop.

Contact Us

For more information, please contact Kathy Korman Frey, director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence (CFEE), at [email protected]. Questions and comments can also be directed to the project manager, Jessica Vodilka, at [email protected].