Chamber’s YEA! selects its Investor Panel winners

YEA! 2016 Class at Investor Panel

The Salisbury Area Chamber of Commerce’s Young Entrepreneurs Academy presented the Investor Panel event in Salisbury University’s Perdue School of Business Auditorium on Wednesday.

The evening began with networking for the students and investors followed by student business presentations. The Investor Panel was the student’s time to shine in YEA!’s signature Shark Tank-like event.

Fourteen student businesses pitched investors on their idea and every business ended up receiving start-up funding.

The investors included Dr. Cathy Townsend, Wicomico County Board of Education, Dr. Memo Diriker, BEACON, Monty Sayler, Bank of America, Sandy Fitzgerald-Angello, Pohanka Automotive Group, Chris Short, Universal Mortgage, Donna Defino, Hebron Savings Bank, Kathleen McLain, 47ABC, Mike Ciorrocco, Universal Mortgage, Andrea Williams, Perdue, and Dwight Miller, Gillis Gilkerson.

The investors selected Adit Abraham and Benyam Ephrem of VelopApps to move on to the 2016 Saunders Scholars Semi-Finals. VelopApps is an app development company with smartphone app, Rootine, as its main product. Rootine helps users achieve a goal by breaking it down into a series of steps.

Adit and Benyam are both 11th graders at Parkside High School. Maggie Kemp of Cloud to Cup was selected as the runner-up. Maggie is in the 9th grade at The Salisbury School. Cloud to Cup sells a filtration system that makes rain water potable.

YEA!’s Saunders Scholars Regional Competition will be held in Rochester, N.Y., in May where students from the region will compete for advancement to the Saunders Scholars Finals in June in Washington, D.C.

Classes began on Nov. 10 and were hosted at the BEACON suite at Salisbury University in the Franklin P. Perdue School of Business. The 2015-2016 class is the 1st YEA! class on the Eastern Shore. The first segment focused on idea brainstorming and idea generation.

Throughout the year, students worked in close cooperation with local business leaders, community leaders and educators who use their personal experiences to demonstrate how to develop ideas and objectives, write a business plan, pitch potential investors, obtain funding, register with governmental agencies, establish e-commerce and a web presence, and much more.


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