Whitman Voices


EEE students win startup funding at IDEA juicer

EEE students win startup funding at IDEA juicer

Last fall, a group of students from the EEE program at Syracuse University’s Whitman School of Management won $1,000 at an IDEA juicer event.

An IDEA juicer is a “Shark Tank” type of presentation, where students from all across campus pitch ideas to a panel of judges for the opportunity  to win startup funding. Last semester, four teams were invited to be finalists at the juicer competitions. Three of these teams represented EEE students in different programs.  Whitman undergraduate students Gabriella Escalante and Hannah Fagut (BS ‘15) pitched a new business concept that came out of their Launchpad class. They developed a working prototype of their product, which is a T-shirt with LED lights that activate with sound.  One prototype had a festival logo in LED lights that lit up to the music.  Their customers would be music festival operators who will buy the shirts to sell to their patrons as a way to increase concession sales. Gabriella and Hannah won $500 to fund the development of this idea.


Other notable students include MSE (’15) student Kean Clifford who won $500 for his custom fishing lure business that mimics three different types of movements that attract predator fish.  The money will be used to improve his manufacturing process and reduce his variable costs so he can make more money on his current orders.  Jimmy Zheng (MBA ’15 with EEE concentration) pitched his idea for fast casual sushi. Although the judges liked his idea, he was not awarded funding as the judges determined that he was further along than other students and therefore did not need the money as much as others did.

In other startup news, EEE student Doug Messer has raised $300,000 in capital from angel investors for his company University Beyond. Doug has been working in the Couri Hatchery to continue developing and implementing his idea. More information about the capital raise and University Beyond can be found here.

Interested in Entrepreneurship & Emerging Enterprises (EEE)? Check out the EEE page!

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