UNL students pitch business ideas at competition

East Campus pillars at enterance

April 27, 2016

Lincoln, Neb. — University of Nebraska–Lincoln students competed for one of three $1,000 awards during a quick pitch competition hosted by the Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship program on April 21.

Quick Pitch
University of Nebraska–Lincoln students competed for one of three $1,000 awards during a quick pitch competition hosted by the Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship program on April 21. In the freshman-sophomore division, the winners were Sarah Wollenburg (left) from Swanton, Nebraska, and Kate Likens from Beatrice, Nebraska.

A total of 39 students pitched their business ideas at the event. Students gave a two-and-a-half-minute pitch and then answered three minutes of questions from a panel of judges. After all of the students had presented, they then had the opportunity to sit down with the judges and gain valuable feedback about how to improve their ideas and presentations.

“All of the students who participated did a tremendous job, and the judges had a tough time determining the winners,” said Tom Field, director of the Engler program.

In the freshman-sophomore division, the winners were Kate Likens from Beatrice, Nebraska, and Sarah Wollenburg from Swanton, Nebraska. Likens and Wollenburg are both agricultural education majors. Their business is MealMap, an all-inclusive source of education and information for all things food and health from the point of production to the point of consumption through a blog format.

In the junior-senior category, Brennan Costello, an agribusiness major from Gothenburg, Nebraska, won with his business called FarmAfield. FarmAfield is an online marketplace for agricultural production contracts to address main customer problems; excessive income volatility for small farmers; and obstacles preventing individuals outside of agriculture from ownership of crops and livestock in small increments.

Also a winner in the junior-senior category was Ashtyn Shrewsbury, an animal science major from Alliance, Nebraska. Shrewsbury’s business is Cornerstone Genetics, a registered red angus cattle business that aims to focus on creating a breeding program that produces high-quality registered red angus bulls to be sold private treaty to area cattlemen.

Each of the winners received a $1,000 award to apply towards their college education.

The Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship program is a unique program designed to empower enterprise builders. Approximately 100 students at UNL are pursuing development of their entrepreneurial skills and capacity in the program. For more information, visit http://engler.unl.edu

Michelle Bassford
Chief Experience Officer
Engler Entrepreneurship Program
402-472-9274
mbassford7@unl.edu