Harrells Christian Academy and Union High School Win Big at Second Annual Chancellor’s High School Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition

Monday, May 01, 2017

UNCW welcomed six high school teams to campus on April 29 for the final round of the second annual Chancellor’s High School Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition. After a series of impressive pitches by these enterprising high school students, the panel of judges awarded first prize in the social enterprise track to the team from Harrells Christian Academy and first prize in the for-profit track to Union High School. A full list of the winners follows:

Social Enterprise Track

  • First Place: Mary Lila Blackburn, Will DeAndrade and Aidan Kunst from Harrells Christian Academy with "Feelz"
  • Second Place: Robert Turbeville from Coastal Christian High School with "Special Sugars"
  • Third Place: Ashlyn Beddingfield, Destyni Noble and Zamiaya Rouse from Duplin Early College High School with "Dazzle Tires"

For-Profit Track

  • First Place: Darius Herring from Union High School with "Plexus"
  • Second Place: Katherine Taylor from Coastal Christian High School with "Tipstr"
  • Third Place: Holden Quinn and Talina Giles from Harrells Christian Academy with "Clothing Coordinator"

The finalists pitched their products during 5- to 7-minute presentations to a panel of judges at the UNCW Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. First-place winners received $1,500 in cash. Second-place winners won $1,000; third-place winners, $500. Each cash prize will be shared among the participants and the schools they represented. Beyond this seed money to start their businesses, winners also received trophies and a copy of The Lean Entrepreneur, the book by Brant Cooper and Patrick Vlaskovits that inspired the competition.

Students from 17 southeastern North Carolina school districts were invited to register for this year’s competition, founded in 2016 by Chancellor Jose V. Sartarelli in partnership with the CIE to challenge students to create innovative solutions to real problems and enhance their knowledge of entrepreneurship. He congratulated the winners and recognized the teams for the quality of their presentations.

“The list of ideas generated by this year’s competitors clearly shows that the American spirit of ingenuity and innovation is thriving among today’s high school students,” Chancellor Sartarelli said.

-- Caitlin Taylor ’18M