University of Northern Iowa (UNI) senior marketing and management double major, Gabe Groothuis of Marion, won the UNI Elevator Pitch Competition that was held on campus Tuesday, October 9th. He will get to test his pitch against college students from around the nation at the National Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization (CEO) Conference Elevator Pitch Competition which will be held in Kansas City, Mo this November 1 through November 3. Groothuis shared, “I am very blessed to be the winner of this year’s pitch competition. I have been working on scaling and growing my business this year and am excited to work with the JPEC to take my ideas to the next level. I am looking forward to representing UNI next month in Kansas City.”
Groothuis, owner and founder of Groothuis Solutions, pitched his service of providing consulting to high school students involved in Mock Trial. With over 4 years of experience with mock trial and a National Mock Trial 1stplace win under his belt, Groothuis is able to provide expertise through workshops and online consulting. His award winning pitch earned him $500 in addition to an all-expense paid trip to the National CEO conference.
Second place winners for the UNI competition were Corey Behrens and Jack Worthington. Behrens, a junior communications and digital media productions major, won $250 for his business Simplistic Views, a wedding videography service. Worthington, on military leave from West Point, also won $250 and is taking advantage of his time off to develop his business, LED Save, in the R.J. McElroy Student Business Incubator. LED Save is a company designed to assist home owners with switching their bulbs from regular to LED in a simple and cost efficient way.
Taking home third place with $100 was oldpeoplebrand, a Streetware clothing company that designs, produces and launches exclusive lines through their e-commerce site. Hollis Wilson, Joey Dunning, Camden Dusenbery and Mack Eastmas, all Cedar Falls High School students, have their business located in the R.J. McElroy Student Business Incubator and are also associates in the Cedar Falls CAPS Business, Communication & Design strand.