The virtual pitch competition showcases the strength of Olds College’s student entrepreneurs. Kadeema Jean was the first-place winner and took home $2,000 cash, and Wilson Schultz was the second-place winner who received $1,000 cash.

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Two Olds College Alumni Win Rotary Den Pitch Competition

Two Olds College alumni, Kadeema Jean and Wilson Schultz, won the top two spots for Olds College in the Rotary Den Pitch Competition finals held on Thursday, Feb. 10, 2022. 

The virtual pitch competition showcases the strength of Olds College’s student entrepreneurs. Kadeema Jean was the first-place winner and took home $2,000 cash, and Wilson Schultz was the second-place winner who received $1,000 cash. Kadeema also won the $500 scholarship prize to attend a two-week online entrepreneurship program through Draper University in California for having the best pitch of the night.

“I'm very elated that I've won the competition because it provided me yet another opportunity to be an ambassador for my country and has brought me one step closer on my entrepreneurial journey as a young woman in the agricultural industry,” says Kadeema Jean. “The scholarship to attend Draper University will play an essential role in enhancing my knowledge and skills in entrepreneurship and make DomCan Biodegradables a reality."

The Rotary Den Pitch Competition helps college students and recent alumni at Bow Valley College, Medicine Hat College and Olds College pitch ideas and start their entrepreneurial journey. The competition is also supported by three Rotary Clubs — Calgary Heritage Park, Medicine Hat Sunrise and Olds. The members of these local rotary clubs score the submissions by students of their local college, and the top two from each college proceed to the finals. 

“It’s always a pleasure for Olds College to contribute to events that embrace entrepreneurship and innovation in our students and alumni,” says Dr. Joy Agnew, Associate Vice-President, Applied Research at Olds College. “We’ve worked hard at Olds College Centre for Innovation to create a place where early stage and student entrepreneurs can collaborate with our team of experts and work towards advancing agriculture. Kadeema and Wilson have been building their ideas with the support of Olds College for several years, so to see their progress and success indicates that the future of innovation in agriculture is moving in the right direction.”

Craig Elias, Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Bow Valley College organizes this college-focused event and was thrilled to see the students embrace entrepreneurship and innovation from all three colleges. 

Kadeema Jean, First Place in Rotary Den Competition

Wilson Shultz, Second Place in Rotary Den Competition 

“We created the Rotary Den Pitch Competition so more college students have the opportunity to showcase their entrepreneurial talent,” says Elias. “I’ve been in Alberta’s startup community and tech ecosystem for over 20 years, and I’m most passionate about assisting post-secondary students becoming first-time entrepreneurs. Helping students from Bow Valley College, Olds College and Medicine Hat College learn how to build and deliver a compelling pitch is a vital first step to putting them on a path to entrepreneurial success.”

Kadeema Jean and Wilson Schultz were the top two entries from Olds College, and were selected to compete in this virtual pitch competition. The top two winners from each college pitched their ideas for a total of $9,000 in prize money and the chance to participate in Draper University's Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship program. Each of the six finalists had three minutes to pitch their idea to the judges and then received feedback on their idea.

At the end of the night, attendees of the final pitch competition picked who they thought made the best pitch of the night to win the $500 scholarship to attend Draper University's virtual Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship program. Kadeema Jean was chosen as the crowd favourite from all six participants and won the scholarship, which also includes the future opportunity to receive a $12,000 U.S. scholarship to a five-week in-person bootcamp that is billed as the top entrepreneurship program in Silicon Valley.