2014: Two finalist teams tied for first-place honors in Stillman’s fourth annual Pirates Pitch Venture Fund Competition. Mary Beliveau and David Kelly, seniors in the School of Diplomacy and International Relations, were recognized for their plan for Mazava Solar, a solar-powered mobile phone charger specifically designed for use in developing countries. Stillman freshman Qingyu (Vito) Lu was selected for his plan to open a Video Game Console Café in his hometown in Nanjing, China. Both teams will receive a monetary award of $4,750 and business services to assist in launching their companies.
Attendees selected two “Audience Choice” awardees: Mazava Solar (described above) and HorseDr.com, a web-based resource for equestrians pitched by Stillman sophomore Selene Presseller. These two teams will receive a monetary award of $250.
Congratulations to all of our finalist teams — each delivered an impressive plan and pitch!
2013: 1st Place: Carl Banks Jr., a senior studying graphic design in the College of Arts & Sciences, won the first place prize for Audiotecha, an online music data search engine.
2nd place: Taseen Peterson, a junior in the Stillman School of Business, won the second prize for TapFactory, LLC, an actual business he started with his brother and another associate, that creates and sells apps through the App Store, including StickyNotes, a reminder app that has over 4 million downloads.
2012: 1st Place: Megan Kelly & Ana Martinez, seniors studying public relations and journalism in the College of Arts & Sciences, won the first place award for PR Express, a web-based business that seeks to make public relations and social media services more accessible to small businesses. The third member of the PR Express team is Adriana Gini, a student at Union County College.
2nd place: Margaret Reilly, a senior in the Stillman School of Business who entered the contest solo, won the second place award for Complementary Connections, an innovative marketing agency that fosters partnerships among products to raise brand recognition with consumers.
2011: 1st Place: Luciana Contuzzi, a freshman in the Stillman School of Business who entered the contest solo, won the $3,500 first place award for The See-Stick, an inexpensive device that would allow hospitals to more efficiently evaluate and treat patient wounds.
2nd place: Eric Casperson & Andrew Gilberti, seniors in the Stillman School, won the $1,500 second place award for X-Act Sports, a smart phone application that would allow users to more easily track favorite sports teams.
A third place, $100 “Honorable Mention” award went to the team of Allen Ratz, a senior in the Stillman School, and Caitlin Papa, a senior in the College of Education and Human Services, for A.C.E. Efforts, a proposal to create a hydroponic farm that would employ autistic young adults in partnership with the Alpine Learning Group, a private non-profit school for autistic students in Paramus, N.J.