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Bob Jones aces top places at UAH’s beEntreprenurial

MADISON – Youth aspiring someday to own a business applied their skills in the premiere Business beEntreprenurial Competition.

Bob Jones High School students claimed first- and second-place honors at the contest, sponsored by the College of Business at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.

“beE” is an entrepreneurship competition for high school students “to empower the next generation to create, collaborate and deliver new ideas,” sponsor and English teacher Robin Dauma said. “Students can create an invention in a ‘Shark Tank-esque’ environment, or they can come up with an entirely new company and brainstorm marketing techniques to sell a new product.”

Bob Jones entered five of the 17 teams at beEntreprenurial. After the morning’s semifinal round, organizers announced the six finalists, which included three Bob Jones groups.

The finalists then delivered formal presentations in Chan Auditorium with an audience of rival teams, sponsors and many UAH students and faculty members. In both rounds, local entrepreneurs served as judges and quizzed teams with difficult questions about viability, marketing and product development.

To prepare, Bob Jones students met for six weeks during Patriot Path time slots. Local entrepreneurs, including an Urban Engineering representative, mentored students for the contest. One of those mentors was Tiffany Jordan, founder and owner of Driven Solutions.

After the final round, Bob Jones earned both first and second place. These teams won $1,500 and $1,000, respectively.

The first-place team members were Tamiyah Brown, Larry Robinson and Caitlin Turner. They received a standing ovation from several UAH professors. Their team, named “Safety Triggers,” developed a thumbprint-activated security chip installed in newly manufactured guns or retroactively installed in existing guns, according to “Patriot Pages.”

Team members taking second place overall honors were Markus Cutler, Kyla Diei, Sija Headrick, Amani Hendricks and Clayton Sanders. Their company, Biyo, created a water filtration system to benefit third-world countries. Instructions for the filtration device would be in recipients’ native language, avoiding the need for expensive foreign contractors to assemble the device. (“Patriot Pages”)

Another Patriot team with Mitch Bedard, Pierce Gardner and Arnav Mathur advanced to the semifinals. Other non-finalist team members were Jordan Aycock, Malachi Battle, Skyler Elliott, Nayeli Gonzalez, Jenna Lundberg, Daniel Navarro and Bradly Spindle.

Our Bob Jones teams represented us extremely well. All the students were professional, energetic and showed amazing teamwork and articulate expression,” Bob Jones Assistant Principal Amy Thaxton said.

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