(Photo courtesy of Brian Green)
An on-campus food delivery app, a custom-color nail polish creator, a virtual reality speech feedback application and a technique to produce high-quality fish food were among the winning pitches at the first edition of College Pitch Philly, an event put together by the Philadelphia Regional Entrepreneurship Education Consortium and StartUp PHL.
On Feb. 24, at the University City Science Center’s Quorum space, over 30 teams from 11 higher-ed centers battled out their best ideas before a panel of experts. A total of $15,500 in prizes were awarded to four student teams from Drexel University, Temple University and the University of Pennsylvania.
Andrew Nakkache, from Temple University, was the creator of the winning pitch. Under the name Habitat, his team proposed a mobile app to provide on-campus access to non-delivering food trucks and restaurants, while helping students become “runners” for a source of income.
Rungh Cosmetics, the second-place project, was led by Temple University student Neha Raman. The project offered a 60-second process for the creation of custom nail polish colors. The package includes a specially engineered mixer, base liquid bottles and color tablets to easily mix-and-match specific tones.
Danish Dhamani and Paritosh Gupta of Drexel University came up with the idea that won third place: SayUmm, a VR-set application capable of providing personalized speech feedback to help users strengthen their public speaking abilities. Through artificial intelligence, the system is able to hash out factors like voice modulation, use of filler words and monitor progress over time.
By popular demand, the People’s Choice accolade went to Penn student Miranda Wang’s project. Under the name BioCellection, the team came up with a method to synthesize single-cell protein and high-value products for aquaculture. The product has shown similar growth rates in salmon with a 73 percentlower mortality rate than fishmeal, Wang said.
Chuck Sacco, member of the Regional Entrepreneurship Education Consortium and director of Drexel University’s Baiada Institute for Entrepreneurship was pleased with the results of the competition and said the Consortium will continue to find opportunities to help students participate in a vibrant startup ecosystem.