Nice Idea Showcase: Young Entrepreneurs Who Inspired Everyone
On November 19th, as part of Innovation Day 2020, numerous young entrepreneurs participated in the Nice Idea Showcase.
And they seriously took the term young entrepreneurs to a new level.
I’m not talking about entrepreneurs in their 20s.
I’m not talking about entrepreneurs in college.
This event showcased the entrepreneurial ideas of high school students!
Whether it was looking for creative solutions to increase diversity in a new school, or revamping a local dress shop for better efficiency, these high school students blew us away with their innovation.
I’m sure you are dying to hear the ideas of these inspiring kids, but first, we need to look back at the journey they took.
Nice Idea, put on by The Nice Center in partnership with Youth Entrepreneurs, is an entrepreneurship program for middle and high school students in which 500+ students participated in its inaugural year.
Students in this program learned to be creative and entrepreneurial, connected with mentors and actual problems, and showcased their ideas.
First, students engaged in four lessons created with the curriculum. They learned the power of win/win partnerships, how to understand their customers with design thinking and the importance of nurturing an opportunity mindset.
Next, they were provided a problem by businesses that needed solving. They sought a solution to this problem through creativity, collaboration, and connecting with mentors.
Finally, they prepared to compete with other students around the state and, if they won, they would get to participate in the Nice Ideas Showcase.
The day they had all worked so hard for.
The day these young entrepreneurs impressed me and so many others with their ingenuity.
The day they would compete for the final prizes: money and resources to make their idea a reality!
Nice Idea Showcase
On November 19th, at around 1 PM, Innovation Day 2020 kicked off.
Viewers rushed into the virtual event, excited to celebrate innovation and entrepreneurship across North Dakota.
After the reading of an official document from Governor Burgum, proclaiming the day as Innovation Day across North Dakota, it was time for the first event of the afternoon: the Nice Idea Showcase.
Hundreds of young entrepreneurs had worked extremely hard on their ideas, but only five groups made it to this final stage.
It was time for the first group to present.
MOST CREATIVE SOLUTION AWARD | Allison, Alyssa, Chesney, and Ella from Barnes County 4-H
In their socially-distanced presentation video, these four students outlined their idea for a more efficient and safe bridal store.
Not only did they come up with a one-stop-shop that would benefit bridal store owners, but they also proposed to lease space to other local business owners in areas such as hair, nails, photography, etc.
That’s what I call efficiency!
Check out this link to view their presentation.
PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD | Arianna and Blake from Strasburg High School
The next group of young entrepreneurs, Ariana and Blake, chose a complex and important issue to solve.
They chose to help recruit diverse students to Link Public Schools, a charter school network opening fall 2021 in the Twin Cities area.
After hearing the social media, website, and digital billboard campaigns they proposed, it seems like they have what it takes to get the job done.
Check out their presentation here.
BEST OVERALL SOLUTION AWARD | Zoe, Gracie, and Matthew from Various Schools (Virtual Cohort)
These students chose the challenge of integrating 3D printing into high school curriculum.
Their proposal was to start a 3D printing company that would provide an online curriculum with every educational 3D printer purchased.
What impressed me the most was that they already had ideas of companies to partner with!
You can find their presentation here.
MOST PRACTICAL SOLUTION AWARD | Madison from Watford City High School
Madison, like our first group of young entrepreneurs, decided to increase the efficiency and safety of a bridal store.
Her idea was to stick with the standard bridal store idea, but completely revamp the layout.
I was blown away by the amount of detail, research, and creativity that went into the floor plan of the bridal shower that she presented.
Check that out at this link.
MOST UNEXPECTED SOLUTION AWARD | Ashton, Ben, and Jasper from Wishek High School
Like our third group, these students strived to integrate 3D printers into more high schools.
Their strategy consisted of a bulk discount for schools when they purchase 3D printers, aiming to allow every student to benefit from the learning a 3D printer provides.
The amount of research and interviews they undertook was extremely impressive.
Click this link for their presentation.
Experience More from Innovation Day
All in all, the Nice Idea Showcase was an awesome event full of entrepreneurship, creativity, and of course, innovation.
The pure energy and imagination of these young entrepreneurs alone made Innovation Day a success.
Yet, luckily for anyone attending, the magic of Innovation Day didn’t end there.
If you want to experience the rest of Innovation Day, check out the Innovation Challenge and the Innovate ND Showcase.
Trust me, they are just as fascinating and impressive as the astounding Nice Ideas Showcase.
Written by Shane Corbett. Shane is a freshman at NDSU and author of The Rational Student, a blog helping other students graduate from college debt-free.