On Thursday, January 28th, Alcorn State Univeristy’s (ASU) chapter of the National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS) along with the Office of Career Services presented Braves’ Tank. This event was inspired by the television show, Shark Tank, which allowed entrepreneurs to pitch business ideas to investors that would support them. Similarly, Braves’ Tank allowed the participating students to present their businesses to a group of panelists and receive honest feedback. The panel consisted of NSLS President, Shanique Strickland, Career Services and Pre-Professional Coordinator/Administrative Assistant, Demyia Graham, Admissions and Recruiting Advisor, Lamar Scott and Student Recruitment Specialist, De’Onqua Isaac.
Each student had 5 minutes to introduce their businesses, present their strategies for success and identify their target audiences. Darya Thompson kicked off the presentations with her new and budding eco-friendly business, KLN, which stands for Keeping Life Natural. Her business is aimed at restoring the planet and saving lives by encouraging others to use everyday items such as toothpaste, cutlery, shopping items, accessories, etc. that are eco-friendly. Jordyn Norris stunned the audience with her shiny brand, Getbejazzled, that “blings” everything to life. With her business she personally customizes anything from accessories to clothing with shiny jewels. Quanila Trotter, the owner of iEndure Designs, credits the birth of her brand to her family and the difficult things that they endured in 2016. Her brand is targeted to encourage people that they can endure anything life throws at them. “If my family and I withstood all of what 2016 threw at us, you can endure whatever you’re faced with on a daily basis,” Trotter said.
Thompson, Norris, and Trotter were chosen for the opportunity to compete with other college students in Mississippi’s Shark Tank which will be held in mid April in Vicksburg, Mississippi. The winner of the state Shark Tank will be eligible to receive funding starting at $10,000 and a mentor to aid them in beginning their business. Demyia Graham will mentor each ASU student to help them further develop their business and prepare for the state competition. “When I see so many talented students at Alcorn that have small businesses, I know that their businesses can be just as successful as others,” Graham stated.