Elevator Pitch Competition
LONGMEADOW, Mass.—Bay Path College sophomore Amanda Schlosky, who is majoring in biology, has won the Elevator Pitch Competition at the annual banquet sponsored by the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation's Entrepreneurship Initiative. The live competition, which was held on April 29, 2009 at the Log Cabin in Holyoke, MA is co-sponsored by six area banks.
“This was truly an amazing experience, and I’m thankful for the entire Bay Path community,” said Schlosky. “Everyone has been extremely supportive of my idea and pitch, and I received a lot of great advice and encouragement.”
Students from each of the 13 participating Western Massachusetts colleges are selected to compete in the annual competition. Participating institutions include American International College, Bay Path College, Elms College, Greenfield Community College, Hampshire College, Holyoke Community College, Mount Holyoke College, University of Massachusetts (School of Engineering & the School of Business), Smith College, Springfield College, Springfield Technical Community College, Westfield State College, and Western New England College. At the competition, contestants have 90 seconds to make their pitch for a new business concept. Student presentations are judged on the feasibility of the idea as well as quality of the pitch. Judges are area investment bankers who are accustomed to making decisions regarding financing new business ventures and choose the winners based solely on the caliber of the pitch. Participants are not allowed to distribute handouts or use technology or props.
Schlosky’s idea was The Popper Stopper, an innovative earplug that would eliminate painful ear “popping” and hearing loss when experiencing a change in altitude, which affects the air pressure in your ears. Many people feel this discomfort while traveling in airplanes. However, The Popper Stopper, a small, soft, porous earplug with a microchip inside, will determine the air pressure on the inside of the eardrum and monitor the flow of air pressure to the outside of the eardrum by opening or closing the tiny pores. This will equalize the pressure and prevent pain and hearing loss.
“Amanda was sensational in developing her concept and delivering her pitch,” said Lauren Way, professor of business at Bay Path College. “Not only did she believe in her product, she believed in herself. She was diligent, and she honed her idea and delivery until it was the perfect pitch.” As the first place award winner, Schlosky received $1,000. Schlosky hopes to fly to Chicago next fall to compete in a national elevator pitch competition sponsored by the Collegiate Entrepreneurs Organization.
About Bay Path College
Bay Path is a four-year private college with an enrollment of more than 1,700 students at its Longmeadow campus and satellite campuses in Sturbridge/Charlton (MA) and Burlington (MA). The College offers undergraduate degrees for women; graduate degrees for men and women; and Bay Path Online, the College’s online center offering graduate degrees and certificates.