Indiana, Kentucky high school students complete entrepreneurship program, earn vouchers

June 20, 2013  


NEW ALBANY, Ind. - Indiana and Kentucky high school students could advance economic development in their hometowns after learning about the entrepreneurial process during a recent weeklong event.

The inaugural Entrepreneurship Academy at New Albany was based on a national award-winning program held annually on the Purdue University campus in West Lafayette. Local business leaders and experts from Purdue Research Park of Southeast Indiana and Indiana University Southeast's School of Business introduced the students to the world of entrepreneurship.

Twenty-two students from 10 counties in Indiana and Kentucky received high-tech business cases at the beginning of the academy; each has been the basis of an existing company. Participating students were from Bullitt, Clark, Floyd, Jefferson, Lawrence, Marion, Oldham, Orange, Scott and Vanderburgh counties.

Teams tested their technology's viability, identified capital needs and devised a management plan for business cases during the week. On the last day of the academy, they presented the cases to judges, who scored each presentation. The highest-scoring team won vouchers.

First place and $500 vouchers went to ALGROW. The students, their high school and hometown were: Zane Copeland, Herron High School, Greenwood, Ind.; Kasey Fondren, Community Montessori, New Albany, Ind.; Sam Mitchell, Christian Academy of Indiana, Sellersburg, Ind.; and Breanna Sherrard, North Bullitt High School, Shepherdsville, Ky. The team's mentor was Ty Adams of Adams:Kinkade Design LLC.

Other teams participating in the inaugural academy were:

Bio Disc: Grant Oldham, Floyd Central High School, Floyds Knobs, Ind.; Nikki Ramsey, Paoli High School, Paoli, Ind.; Dennis Rumpel, Jeffersonville High School, Jeffersonville, Ind.; and Yonatan Smolyar, North Oldham High School, Goshen, Ky. The team's mentor was Joel Adams of SolutionStreak.

HexaHeal: Chris Collier, Floyd Central High School, Georgetown, Ind.; Sheldon Kapp, Oldham County High School, LaGrange, Ky.; Oscar Tercero, North Bullitt High School, Louisville; Kaitlyn Thompson, Mitchell High School, Mitchell, Ind.; and Maxwell Weidekamp, Jeffersonville High School, Jeffersonville, Ind. The team's mentor was Ed Fancher of EnterScape.

Windworks: Myrissa Druien, North Bullitt High School, Shepherdsville, Ky.; Emily Elkins, Harrison High School, Evansville, Ind.; Carson Jenkins, Floyd Central High School, Greenville, Ind.; and Joseph King, Jeffersonville High School, Jeffersonville, Ind. The team's mentor was Rich Boling of Techshot Inc.

Zenith Inc.: D'Artagnan Engle, Austin High School, Austin, Ind.; Manuel Kim, Louisville Collegiate School, Louisville; David McGary, Signature School, Evansville, Ind.; Madelyn Miles, North Bullitt High School, Louisville; and Michael Parsons, Jeffersonville High School, Clarksville, Ind. The team's mentor was Jyll Stuart of Veracity Technologies LLC.

John Vellinger, co-founder of Techshot Inc., was keynote speaker at the awards ceremony. Judges were Rex Bickers, an angel investor, Pat More of Duke Energy, Tony Schy of Velocity Indiana and Jay White of Indiana University Southeast.

Community partners were Blue Sky Foundation, Duke Energy Foundation, Horseshoe Foundation of Floyd County, Velocity Indiana, Ogle Foundation and Park Community Federal Credit Union.

About Purdue Research Park

The Purdue Research Park, with four locations across Indiana, has the largest university-affiliated business incubation complex in the country. The parks are home to about 200 companies that employ 4,000 people and are located in West Lafayette, Indianapolis, Merrillville and New Albany.

Purdue Research Park contact: Steve Martin, 765-588-3342, sgmartin@prf.org

Source: Paul Moses, 812-206-8399, pemoses@prf.org

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