Important Dates & News
Sessions - Professor Burke
None scheduled at this time.
Training Sessions - SBDC J.
We have scheduled 2 more opportunities for
Tuesday, April 7 and 14, 2015
3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
PH 362 Classroom
Online Submission Opens (March 6th @ 8am - through April 20 at
11:59 pm): Submission link on Competition Forms & Links
This is a four part submission:
1. Profile: contact information & group members
(please fill out this section asap
so we can get an idea of number of participants for set-up)
2. Business Plan Submission - approx. 700 words/section or 5000
words total for all sections.
3. Supplemental Uploads 3MB Maximum
4. Poster Upload - 10MB Maximum
This can be filled out at any time and updated until April 20, 2015
at 11:59 pm.
Good Luck to everyone!
Coaching Sessions TBA.
These will be on a first come first served basis or you
can contact professor Burke at
to set up another time if you can not make it.
Competition - May 8, 2015 in Perdue Hall.
2014 Perdue Entrepreneurship Competitions Award Nearly $60K
SALISBURY, MD---The proverb, “If at first you
don’t succeed, try, try, try again,” rings true
for entrepreneurial-minded students at Salisbury
Last year, management major Nick Simpson
earned $3,000 in the Franklin P. Perdue School
of Business’ Entrepreneurship Competitions when
he premiered Bounce, an app designed to connect
nightlife businesses and consumers.
that wasn’t good enough. Simpson wanted to win
the grand prize, the $10,000 Bernstein Award, to
support the venture.
So the Ellicott City native and his business
partner, Ryan Nuzum, a West Virginia University
graduate, worked for the past year to improve
The efforts paid off. They won some $15,600
in cash and consulting services during SU’s 2014
“We weren’t just in it for the contest; we
really cared about the judges’ feedback,” said
Simpson, now a senior. “The advice you get is so
valuable, and we already have about five
follow-up meetings planned with contacts we
He said the Bounce team, which also includes
SU students Laura Thornburg and Nick Giambra,
and Allen Butler of Longwood University, hopes
to continue working on app development and
programming over the summer and then move into
SU alumnus Kevin Bernstein ’92, vice president
of strategy at LWRC International in Cambridge,
was one of three judges for the Bernstein Award,
the portion of the competition that for more
than a quarter century has been supported by his
father, Richard, a 1976 SU graduate and the
founder of companies including K&L Microwave,
Inc. in Salisbury.
“When my father started his businesses, he
didn’t have this kind of program and this kind
of opportunity to be mentored,” Bernstein said.
“You have to leverage this environment ... and
Overall, student competitors walked away with
nearly $60,000 in cash, services and prizes,
including 30 earned awards and eight raffles.
“What I saw is focus,” said judge Mike
Cottingham, president/CEO of Rommel Holdings.
“You were poised; you were polished. You
explained why SU is a rising university and the
Perdue School is a rising business school.”
day started with an “Invest in My Idea” poster
session in Perdue Hall’s Atrium and first floor.
After review by some 29 judges, 15 teams
advanced, earning $600 each and a spot in the
second round “Gull Cage.” This Shark Tank-style
event involved one-minute pitches, followed by
four minutes of rapid-fire questions from
Senior management major Jason Rogewitz of
Salisbury called the experience “nerve
wracking,” adding, “it’s fast; the clock is
ticking.” His UrBowl pasta shop business partner
Chris Himberger, a sophomore accounting/finance
major from Bethpage, NY, said: “You want to
answer questions effectively, but at the same
time you want to answer as many questions as
Gull Cage prizes again were provided by
supporter Warren Citrin, co-founder of Solipsys,
Gloto, Redox Power Systems and fractograf.
First place and $4,000 went to Bounce, while
second place and $3,000 went to FedXmas, a
Christmas tree delivery service proposed by
another returner, Brendan Guihen, a junior
communication arts major from Silver Spring,
along with Imoleayo Alabi, a junior finance
major from Salisbury. UrBowl earned third place
and $2,000; fourth place and $1,000 went to Werk,
LLC, a part-time job website proposed by
freshmen Aaron Wall, Kyle Cooper, Peter Baum and
These four Gull Cage winners then moved on to
present their full business plans during the
afternoon Bernstein competition.
Judge Steve Evans, CEO of Allen Harim Foods,
apologized to all the competitors for asking
some of the tough questions they faced, but, he
emphasized, that’s how “you get better.” He
added: “We are extremely impressed. You get a
lot of real experience here and that’s what you
Several special awards were distributed at
the event, including two new $5,000 “best
product” prizes provided by Bob Livingston of
Dover Corporation and Dave Howett of K&L
Microwave. Presented after the poster
competition, they went to a glass company
proposed by Phillip Valencia, a senior
management major from Salisbury, and Chesapeake
BIOFuel, created by Lori Defnet, a senior
accounting major from Poolesville, with Richard
Baldwin, a senior management major from Berlin.
Defnet and Baldwin also earned $3,000 in
services from Mark Leisher Productions.
The Salisbury Area Chamber of Commerce and
Salisbury-Wicomico Economic Development also
awarded $5,000 in services including consulting
and rent-free space to ADarchy, LLC, proposed by
Jonathan Pilchard, a senior accounting major
from Salisbury and his business partner, Trey
The Werk team, as the second place Bernstein
Award winner, also earned $1,500 cash and an
additional $3,500 in consulting from Maryland
Capital Enterprises, as well as a membership to
hotDesks.org, the Eastern Shore’s first
co-working space, from the Eastern Shore
Entrepreneurship Center (ESEC).
judges included many SU graduates, past winners
and Perdue School Executive Advisory Council
members who are successful entrepreneurs and
executives at regional and national companies
They also represented some of the event’s
sponsors, which at the Gold level included Bank
of America, Burbage Properties, Inc., ESEC,
First Shore Federal, Gillis Gilkerson Inc.,
Layton’s Chance Vineyard & Winery, Leverage
Mobile, Sherwood of Salisbury, TEDCO and Yard
Designs, Inc. Silver sponsors were Pohanka of
Salisbury and Comprehensive Financial Solutions;
bronze sponsors were Chesapeake Utilities and
the Strategic Wealth Management Group.
Other donations and prizes came from ACE
Hardware, A.I.R. Lawn Care, Burley Oak Brewing
Company, Caroline Economic Development
Corporation, fractograf, J.L. Wilson, McFadden
Art Glass, the Paper People and Tri-Dimension.
Thanks to all our sponsors for helping to
make our 2014 competition so successful.
We appreciate both your time and your donations!
If you are interstested in being a donor next
year please follow the following link for more
For more information or to become involved
next year, contact William Burke, competition
director and Perdue School professor, at
firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit
Photo Gallery 2013
Perdue Hosts ABC's SHARK TANK Open Casting Call on May 9, 2014
SALISBURY, Md. - From things that light up,
to a sling to carry your pup, and how about body armor inspired
by Iron Man!
"The original model had swords that came
out of the bottom," says designer JeanPaul Badjo, a senior at
UMES. Luckily, he
couldn't travel with the swords (or flame thrower).
Nearly 200 entrepreneurs made their way to
Salisbury University Friday, for the chance to pitch their
business ideas on ABC's hit show Shark Tank!
Casting manager Mindy Zemrak, says, why not? "You can go
to a small town and you can have a great big company or idea
that's happening there," says Zemrak.
Rick Long from Prince Georges
County,Maryland is hoping to make bank with his Fishoff Gloves.
"Grab your fish, release it, or whatever
you do with it, and then your hands are clean and safe, right
back to your rod, right back to the wheel," says Long.
The reality show features would-be
entrepreneurs, pitching business ideas to a panel of potential
investors, or "sharks."
Shannon's Gourmet Bakery from Baltimore is
confident her cookies will go a long way.
And SU grad Robin Jenks Vanderlip believes
her company My Great Garden is more than just a money maker;
it's a chance to empower people with disabilities.
"I want to create a franchise model that
allows them to have their own business, and we would manage the
schedule, the training, and collection of money," says
Gardening helped her heal after a crippling
brain injury left the woman mute, after hitting her head years
Now, she creates custom vegetable gardens
for other people.
So, what's the biggest tip from the people
doing the picking?
According to Zemrak, "know your numbers, and have a lot of
energy and passion about what it is you're bringing into The
The entrepreneurs who made it past Friday's
audition will go through a few more rounds before potentially
making it in front of the Sharks for a taping.
Anyone who does make it that far would tape
in September and the season will run until May 2015.
We also just found out that our casting
call had record numbers today.
There were almost 200 people that came out,
the highest a Shark Tank casting has ever seen.
Folks at today's tryout also have the
option to be featured in 47 ABC's $4,000 "Delmarva's Choice Web
submit a video pitch, to be posted on our website, and visitors
can pick a winner.
That contest starts on May 19th
Link to news video: