Photo caption: The five Ashland University undergraduate students – (l-r) Christina Fox, Nell Cronin, Emily Bosley, Hosam Alkoshy and Christopher Hassmann - react to receiving the first place $2,500 check after winning the Business Concept Competition held as part of the Entrepreneurship Immersion Week at Hiram College.
A team of five Ashland University undergraduate students competed and claimed first place in the 2013 Business Concept Competition held as part of the seventh annual Entrepreneurship Education Consortium’s Entrepreneurship Immersion Week at Hiram College on Aug. 4–9.
During a week filled with entrepreneurship educational curriculum, the nine participating collegiate teams conceived and developed a business concept that was presented on Friday morning to a team of judges from the Northeast Ohio entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Due the competitive nature of the concepts presented, the judges took more than an hour and a half to select the winners. The Ashland University team won the first place prize of $2,500 for its improved public and commercial restroom product. The members of the team are contemplating their next steps in patenting and commercializing their concept.
The Ashland University team members who competed were:
- Hosam Alkoshy, a senior information systems major from Saudi Arabia
- Emily Bosley, a junior entrepreneurship and finance major from Wellington, Ohio
- Nell Cronin, a junior public relations, strategic communication & health and risk communication major from Loveland, Ohio
- Christina Fox, a senior marketing major from Upper Sandusky, Ohio
- Christopher Hassmann II, a junior biochemistry major from Mansfield, Ohio
Dr. Jeffery Russell, dean of the Dauch College of Business and Economics, commented, “I am very proud of our Ashland student success at this intercollegiate competition. Their success is a reflection of the quality of the Ashland University educational, experiential and support programs to prepare our students for the rigors of living and working in the global economy.”
Junior Nell Cronin was thrilled that the AU team won first place in the competition.
“When the judges announced that AU won first place, I was in shock. It was the most amazing feeling knowing something that you and four other students created was so successful,” Cronin said. “Knowing that we won and that this potentially could be huge is incredible. I am so proud of everyone.”
The Entrepreneurship Educational Consortium Inc. (EEC) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation and a unique collaboration of 11 Northeast Ohio colleges and universities whose purpose is to provide practical "experiential" and theoretical education to students in Northeast Ohio to prepare them to become entrepreneurs or intrapreneurs, create new ventures and jobs and build wealth for the region. The EEC was founded to promote both the concept and the reality of Entrepreneurship among college students of all disciplines. Beyond imparting the necessary classroom fundamentals, it encourages student exploration of new business concepts.
Members are Ashland University, Baldwin Wallace University, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland State University, Hiram College, John Carroll University, Kent State University, Lake Erie College, Lorain County Community College, University of Akron and University of Mount Union.
The EEC directors and special members work with all the teams, often late into the nights, to hone and improve their concepts for the Friday morning competition. The Ashland team was coached by Read F. Wakefield, director of the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, at Ashland University and treasurer and past-president of the EEC. Dr. Dan Fox, associate professor and chair of the department of Marketing, Hospitality Management and Fashion Merchandising, and past-director of the EEC, assisted the Ashland team on Thursday afternoon and evening.
Ashland University is one of the seven founding members of the EEC. The EEC won national recognition when it received the 2010 Innovative Pedagogy for Entrepreneurship Education from the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship.
Ashland University, ranked in the top 200 colleges and universities in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities category for 2013, is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University (www.ashland.edu) values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students. ###