Utah’s top high school entrepreneurs won $20,000 in cash and prizes at the 2018 High School Utah Entrepreneur Challenge (HSUEC) Final Awards and Showcase event on April 7 at the University of Utah’s Lassonde Studios. The program is managed by the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, a division of the David Eccles School of Business, and sponsored by Zions Bank.
WeldSmart, a team from Westlake High School, won the grand prize and $7,500 for an idea for a welding hood that controls power to the welder to prevent arc flash. Second place went to AskManny App, a team from Herriman High School, and third place went to Tile Support Pedestal, a team from Wasatch High School. (See a complete list of winners and team descriptions below.)
“We admire the drive and creativity of this young group of entrepreneurs,” said Anne Bastien, program director at the Lassonde Institute “We appreciate the community coming out to support our students and the general entrepreneur community.”
The competition received over 100 student business-idea submissions from high school students throughout the state. The top 20 teams advanced to the final round, where they got the chance to pitch their ideas to judges, made up of many influential community leaders. Teams’ ideas and business presentations ranged from a hydroponic indoor garden to services of a personal stylist in an app.
Among the other prizes were $1,000 scholarships for 10 young creative minds to live at Lassonde Studios, an entrepreneurial living-learning community at the University of Utah. The building opened in August 2016. All students at the University of Utah are welcome to live at Lassonde Studios or to use the 20,000-square foot innovation space on the first floor to collaborate, build prototypes and launch companies.
Learn more about High School Utah Entrepreneur Challenge at lassonde.utah.edu/hsuec.
Winners of the 2017 High School Utah Entrepreneur Challenge
- Grand Prize Winner, $7,500 (Zions Bank) – WeldSmart
- 2nd Place Winner, $5,000 (Zions Bank) – Ask Manny App
- 3rd Place Winner, $2,500 (Zions Bank) – Tile Support Pedestal
- Lassonde Studios Scholarships, $1,000 each (Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute) – Jack Leonard (Geo Focus), Isaac Bromley-Dulfano (Water Widget), Kael Berkley (Tile Support Pedestal), Brennah Strange (Recovery Wear), Michael Jones (Castable), William Maloy (Retractable Road Reflector), Colin Pollard (Water Widget), Maira Howcroft (The “Orca”), Sela Serafin (mySTYLIST)
- Intellectual Property Protection Package (Snell & Wilmer; $5,000 value) – WeldSmart
- People’s Choice Award, $1,000 (Zions Bank) – mySTYLIST
- Best Prototype Award, $500 (Zions Bank) – The Wolf’em Stick Pro
- STEM Entrepreneur Award, $1,000 (STEM Action Center) – Seymour
- Top Online Vote Award, $500 (Zions Bank) – Ask Manny App
- Finalist Award, $100 each (Zions Bank) – All Top 20 teams won an additional $100
Top 20 Teams in the 2018 High School Utah Entrepreneur Challenge
Here are the top 20 teams in the High School Utah Entrepreneur Challenge. These teams will advance to the final event. They are listed in alphabetical order:
- AskManny App (Herriman High School) – AskManny fuses all elements involved in the high school dance-planning process into a user-friendly app.
- Castable Premium Podcast Experience (Skyridge High School) – Universal podcast listening and creation platform available on all devices.
- CCD: Campfire Charging Device (West High School) – CCD is a portable array of electrothermal generators that uses fire and water to generate a current.
- ClearWater Revival (Skyline High School) – Separates gray water from cleaner water for reuse in gardens.
- Discount Driver (West High School) – An app that tracks phone usage while driving and rewards points to be redeemed for local business coupons.
- GeoFocus – An Internet platform for locations to be used by film and photography professionals.
- Green Republic (Highland High School) – Green Republic uses hydroponics and vertical indoor farming to grow fresh greens locally.
- mySTYLIST (Park City High School) – An app that will create outfits for users based on their personal style and what already exists in their closet.
- Recovery Wear (Park City High School) – Clothing that will provide easy on/off and one-handed dressing for people with large casts.
- Retractable Road Reflector (American Fork High School) – Retractable road reflectors help improve visualization for drivers 24/7 through all seasons.
- roadRewards (Skyridge High School) – A creative solution to distracted driving that rewards points for keeping your phone locked.
- Seymour (Copper Hills High School) – A small robot for people with cerebral palsy to use to feed themselves.
- SubzeO (West High School) – The SubzeO allows for perishable medications to be preserved without electricity.
- The Clean, Green, Flying Machine (Park City High School) – A floating air filter system that will extract large, PM 2.5, and PM 10 particulates from the air.
- The “Orca” (West Jordan Middle School) – The Orca is a prosthetic fishing device.
- The Wolf’em Stick Pro (Bingham High School) – The Wolf’em Stick is an innovative campfire-roasting tool that makes Wolf’ems.
- Tile Support Pedestal (Wasatch High School) – The pedestal is an adjustable system of plastic components that forms a pillar capable of compensating for slope and variable heights
- UV Sensor Wearable Technology (Park City High School) – An electronic device capable of recording and wirelessly transmitting UV data.
- Water Widget (Academy of Math Engineering Science) – A data-driven watering controller that uses low-cost sensors and open-source hardware and software.
- WeldSmart (Westlake High School) – Welding hood that controls power to the welder to prevent arc flash.
About the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute
The Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute is a nationally ranked hub for student entrepreneurship and innovation at the University of Utah and an interdisciplinary division of the David Eccles School of Business. The first programs were offered in 2001, through the vision and support of Pierre Lassonde, an alumnus of the Eccles School and successful mining entrepreneur. The institute now provides opportunities for thousands of students to learn about entrepreneurship and innovation. Programs include workshops, networking events, business-plan competitions, startup support, innovation programs, graduate seminars, scholarships, community outreach and more. All programs are open to students from any academic major or background. The Lassonde Institute also manages the Lassonde Studios, a $45 million innovation space and housing facility for all students. Learn more at lassonde.utah.edu.