Last weekend, more than 30 students from Brisbane Girls Grammar School and Brisbane Grammar School ventured into the world of entrepreneurship. Ms Nicole Jordan and Mr Marvin Fox from Aussie Founders Network hosted a two-day hackathon, during which students were inspired and mentored by a group of industry experts and entrepreneurs as they worked to ideate, prototype, validate and eventually pitch ideas.
The students began the program by listening to a talk by the co-founder and CEO of World’s Biggest Garage Sale, Ms Yasmin Griganulaus, which deepened their understanding of social entrepreneurship. They then had the opportunity to network with industry experts, including discussing leadership with Organisation Culture Specialist, Mr Rudy Crous, who is a corporate psychologist and co-founder of Compono.
They also received insightful mentoring from Mr Ben Wood, Partner of McCullough Robertson, Ms Debra Staltari, Marketing Consultant at Minter Elliston and Mr Marc Orchard, Director of Startups with BDO. On the Sunday, students were delighted to receive feedback on their ideas from entrepreneurs including Mr Chris Saad, former Head of Product of Uber Development Platform, Mr Mitch Saad, Senior Full Stack Developer from Outfit.io, and Ms Lisa Holownia, CEO at Buzzcorp Australia.
The students’ projects comprised:
- Recycle for Change—an innovative solution to incentivise the public to recycle goods
- Initialise—a service that connects entrepreneurs, investors and skilled workers
- Instatutor—flexible student-orientated tutoring sessions
- Connect Bench—spreading connectedness by starting conversations
- Scholarly—a multi-tool to help students manage their study time
- EZ Park—an innovative parking solution to easily identify available parking spaces.
The student prototypes were a wonderful combination of digital mock-ups to almost full-scale physical models of interactive hardware.
The event culminated in a live stream to the combined schools’ community where parents, family and the wider School community could share in the student presentations. The presentations were judged by BGGS Manager of E-learning, Mr Shane Skillen, and BGS Deputy Headmaster of Students, Mr David Carroll.
Special congratulations must go to Tianyu (Julia) Guo (10H), Ella Chen (10W) and Angus Duncan (BGS) from Team Scholarly who won the competition with their online platform designed to help students maximise their study efficiency, academic outcomes and mental wellbeing. Their mock-ups of the Scholarly website and student interface in the time provided were outstanding.
The Student Entrepreneur Program is a co-curricular program primarily offered to Year 11 Economics students. It provides them with opportunities to apply their knowledge to real-world issues and develop 21st century solutions.
Dr Sam Peng
Head of Economics and Student Entrepreneur Program Coordinator