Junior Takes Top Entrepreneurial Award
WFI press release:
Perkins '11 took first place and the $1,000 prize in the
7th Annual Collegiate Elevator Pitch Competition on Wednesday,
April 28. The competition was held during the Harold Grinspoon
Charitable Foundation's Annual Entrepreneurship Initiatives
Awards Banquet honoring student business owners.
an economics and government double major, was one of the
13 students from colleges throughout the Pioneer Valley,
including many with established business courses and entrepreneurial
programs, to participate in the competition.
had just 90 seconds to pitch a business idea to a panel of
potential investors in front of 350 audience members at the
Log Cabin banquet hall in Holyoke, Mass.
idea: Si Bella Bras, a line of fashionable brassieres for
voluptuous women, ergonomically designed to alleviate backaches
and shoulder pains.
Perkins gained entry into the
regional competition by first winning the $100 prize at the
Smith Elevator Pitch contest on March 8. Following that event,
she refined her pitch with the help of co-advisors for Smith
Entrepreneurship Initiatives, René Heavlow, assistant
director of Women & Financial Independence, the Smith
Center for Financial Education, and Susannah Howe, director
of the Picker Engineering Design Clinic.
This is not the
first time Smith students have been successful at the
regional competition, finishing in either second or third
place in four of the past six contests. "Over the years,
our students have had numerous great ideas and presented
them with excitement," says Howe. "But Sarah brought
a particular passion and confidence to her business concept.
I truly enjoyed working with her to perfect her winning pitch."
Asked what she plans to do with
her $1,100 in prize money, Perkins replied, "I
going to invest the money in a money market account for now. I want to do a bit
more market research before I have the first prototypes made."