Today, I served as a judge at the Georgetown University COVID19 Design Challenge.
It was a 1 day competition that allowed for students to pitch ideas for helping to deal with some of the social, economic, and mental health side effects of COVID 19. There were three key areas of focus: (1) Vulnerable Communities, (2) Unemployment, and (3) Education.
Overall, there were 11 teams that pitched. Each had 3 minutes of presentation time and 2 minutes of QA.
Team 1: Grocery Buddies
A website that matches seniors with a college student grocery student buddy. Seniors don’t put themselves at risk by going out for groceries. College students get to earn reward points and community service hours.
Team 2: Project Portal
Using VR to create a progressive learning environment for college students who have zoom fatigue.
Team 3: All Aboard to Health
Problem: Bus drivers are out of work and some families used to get food through school programs.
Solution: Hire bus drivers to deliver care packages to at risk families.
Team 4: Vesta
A new type of university based on experiential learning (launching businesses, apprenticeships, volunteer work). Save money, gain real life experience.
Team 5: CoLearn
A platform that combines syncronous learning with a social community.
Team 6: Cognitio Academy
Helps universities and employers provide finance, fitness, and personal leadership
Team 7: KITS 4 KIDS
For parents concerned their children are falling behind in education, Kits 4 Kids sends 4 books + 4 activities based on a monthly subscription.
Team 8: CareShare
Takes the concept of a pod and applies it to child care so that families can have access to safe, health, and affordable child care. Each pod is comprised of a group of 3–5 vetted families that live within 2 miles.
Team 9: Nana’s Table
Combines food subscription with a customer service approach that also checks in with seniors, focusing on the entire physical, dietary, and social needs of seniors.
Team 10: Project EquiCare
App that incentivizes BIPOC youth struggling to deal with mental health issues to connect with mental health professionals.
Team 11: Hoya Hub
Freshmen in college this year haven’t been to campus and are struggling to make friendships that are so crucial to the college experience. HoyaHub is an online portal that helps college students connect with one another.
After each presentation, the judges filled out a form. After all the presentations, we got together, deliberated and voted on the Spirit of Georgetown Award.
The Spirit of Georgetown Award
- Exemplifies the selfless values-based spirit of our University
- We’re a leading research university with a heart.
- We’re the nation’s oldest Catholic and Jesuit university.
- Today we’re a forward-looking, diverse community devoted to social justice, restless inquiry and respect for each person’s individual needs and talents.
After we were done voting on the teams and deciding who should win the Spirit of Georgetown Award, we came back in and the winning teams were announced.
- 1st Place: All Aboard to Health: $2,500
- 2nd Place: Kit’s 4 Kids: $1,500
- 3rd Place: Nana’s Table $500
- Spirit of Georgetown Award: All Aboard to Health $500
Great event by Georgetown Entrepreneurship and great work by all of the teams!
Upcoming pitch competitions at Georgetown:
Our next big event will be Rocket Pitch and Bark Tank / Leonsis Prize.