Fall 2016 Senior Capstone Competition Recap


Each year undergraduate seniors from Syracuse University’s Martin J. Whitman School of Management participate in the Whitman Capstone experience, an experiential program where students develop a viable, sustainable and innovative new venture using all of the elements of their business education. The experience culminates with the Capstone Business Plan Competition. This fall 2016, 64 teams comprised of more than 300 Whitman seniors competed in the competition.

In the first round, each team was given 15 minutes to present its business plan to a panel of judges. After each presentation, the teams were given an additional 10 minutes to answer questions. One team from each room was chosen to advance to the next round, where teams conducted one-minute elevators pitches in front of a new panel of judges. From those pitches, five teams were selected to present again the next day in the final round. The results for the fall 2016 Capstone Competition final round are as follows:

First Place: Busie

Team Busie poses for a victory photo.

Team Busie poses for a victory photo.

Team members: Josh Bain, Louis Bookoff, Vanessa Eatz, Jennie May and Seth Samowitz
Faculty advisor: John Torrens

About: Busie is a business to business instant quoting and booking application program interface (API) that shortens and eases the process for individual charter bus operators. This saves businesses time and money by streamlining the quoting and booking process. Busie will license to individual motorcoach companies. The integrated platform and website will allow motorcoach companies to offer their customers a seamless transition from motorcoach research to requesting a quote. 

Second Place: Projuice

The Projuice team repping their company shirts.

The Projuice team repping their company shirts.

Team members: Michael Bock, Gabrielle Del Vecchio, Christian Domos, Lauren Knafo and Daniela Lisa
Faculty advisor: John Torrens

About: Projuice is a smoothie sourced from aesthetically-unappealing fruits that would have been otherwise thrown out. Offering an all-natural, healthy smoothie that is sourced from domestically local farms will provide people with a nutritious product while being environmentally conscious. By reducing the time fruit juice is held in storage facilities, natural flavors will be preserved and prevent the need of any re-infusion of flavors that contributes to most competitors’ unhealthily high sugars.

Third Place: X-Factor Lacrosse

Capstone Finals 2016

The X-Factor Lacrosse team showing some company pride.

Team members: Joe DeMarco, Scott Firman, Ben Williams, Tori DeGrazio and Braeden Villeneuve

Faculty advisor: John Torrens

About: The X-Factor face-off machine will be a completely new product concept to the lacrosse market. Pre-existing ‘self-practice’ products on the market include the bounce back lacrosse wall and backup nets for missed shots. However, ours will be the first position-specific product. The significant value of our faceoff machine is that it’s the closest simulation to a live face-off. The technicality of the position demands constant practice. Being able to practice a faceoff alone is something that has never been a legitimate option until now.

Honorable Mention: DiaBEAT-It
Team members: Jonah Back, Jessica Dunne, Matthew Herman, Katherine Hochrein and Samantha Perlowitz
Faculty advisor: Ken Walsleben

About: DiaBEAT-It strives to enable relationship building among diabetic youth and create a fun, friendly interactive social environment. Users gain points based on performance and time spent within the game, which adds an element of friendly competition to the digital community. DiaBEAT-It is the first gamified health application of its kind where T1D youth can socialize in a chat messaging system, compete in diabetic related games, and interact with each other in an educational online platform.

Honorable Mention: KnoStone
Team members: Emily Muscarella, Antonio Nave, Felipe Copete and Adriana Brown
Faculty advisor: Ken Walsleben

About: KnoStone is a comprehensive, supportive product targeted specifically toward at-risk patients. It is purchased as a three-month kit comprised of at-home urine tests that will detect the supersaturation and absolute levels of the six main kidney stone causing chemicals. A complimentary smartphone application will interpret and translate the results into easy-to-read graphs for users, highlighting their specific risk factors. The application will then produce a customized nutrition plan designed to reduce levels of chemicals in the urine. Over time, KnoStone aims to reduce a user’s likelihood to develop kidney stones – thereby targeting this national health problem at its root.


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