Georgia Highlands College

Georgia Highlands College and Sierra Nevada University will partner to present the virtual East-West Innovation Bowl on Friday.

Similar to the popular television series “Shark Tank,” teams will present their ideas using an elevator pitch followed by questions from the judges.

Instead of asking students to create a business or marketing plan, one of the primary objectives will be for teams to identify a void in the marketplace or a need that could be filled by an innovative product or service.

The East-West Innovation Bowl will be livestreamed on YouTube on Friday from 3 to 5 p.m.

The competition will be judged by faculty and SNU/GHC Mentors.

Students will have 3 to 5 minutes to share information about their idea in a live pitch, then they will the respond to questions from judges for up to five minutes.

Judging categories are Innovation/Uniqueness, Feasibility, Market Potential, Customer segments, Value proposition, Products and services, Revenue streams, Channels, Key resources, Cost structure, Content and Presentation and a Business Model Canvas.

GHC’s Pat Manna came up with the idea based on the Bulldog Business Bowl he created while teaching at the Citadel, the military college of South Carolina. It’s a non-academic exercise and innovative ideas can come from anyone of any background.

Manna is the executive advisor to Alan Nichols, who serves as Dean for Innovation and Curriculum for GHC’s School of Social Sciences and Education. Over the past year, he has also worked as a curriculum advisor with GHC’s School of Business and Professional Studies.

“Pat has been on a mission to bring experiential learning to students across the United States,” Assistant Professor of Logistics and Supply Chain Management Lucinda Montgomery said. “The East-West Innovation Bowl is a natural progression of finding ways for GHC students to connect to other higher education institutions.”

Montgomery said that, by exposing students to a wide variety of cultural backgrounds and businesses, they learn diversity, equity and inclusion from a business perspective.

“The overall goal is to make the East-West Innovation Bowl a staple for GHC students ... the hope is that other schools will see the value-added proposition for students from any pathway,” Montgomery said.

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