More than 80 high school students from around the country will compete in a version of the popular TV show Shark Tank at 9 a.m. Friday, June 23, at The Catholic University of America, but with a twist. The budding entrepreneurs will spend several days in the run-up to the competition developing ideas for products that serve the common good, in accord with Catholic social teaching.
As a way to mirror the fast-paced world of business, the rising juniors and seniors will meet several times during Catholic University’s Summer Business Institute with Busch School of Business and Economics faculty, who will present problems for the students to solve.
The students will participate in workshops with other Busch School faculty members on creativity, product validation, finance, marketing, and ways that Catholic social teaching can be integrated into business.
Participants will work in teams of four under the guidance of counselors who are Catholic University business majors. Teams will research and select a problem, create a product prototype to solve the problem, determine an appropriate price, and develop ways to promote their idea via social media. William Bowman, dean of the Busch School, will serve as one of the members of the Cardinal Industries Board of Directors who will judge the students’ presentations on June 23.
To help inspire them, students will hear from Winnette McIntosh Ambrose, at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, June 19. Ambrose gave up her career as a biomedical engineer after opening the Sweet Lobby bakery in Washington, D.C. Winner of the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars, she is featured in the documentary, “To Whom Is Given: Business for the Common Good,” which tells the stories of three businesses and their Christian owners who are authentically living out their faith through everyday work.
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ABOUT: The Catholic University of America is the national university of the Catholic Church and the only higher education institution founded by the U.S. bishops. Established in 1887 as a papally chartered graduate and research center, the University comprises 12 schools and 22 research facilities and is home to 3,241 undergraduate and 2,835 graduate students.
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