Trust Your Crazy Idea Challenge Finals

NEW ORLEANS – Ever have a great idea as a kid that you thought would make you the next Bill Gates? Local high schoolers will soon compete to see if their crazy idea is better than their peers.

         The Trust Your Crazy Ideas Challenge, an annual entrepreneurship program and competition, takes place on Saturday, March 21, 2015, at Manning’s Restaurant, 519 Fulton St., from 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

         Four teams finalists will pitch their ideas in a 5-minute presentation followed by a question and answer session.

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         Judges will score the pitches based on product development, presentation, creativity and marketing.

         More than 2,000 students in public, parochial and private schools in Jefferson and Orleans Parish participated in the Junior Achievement Be Entrepreneurial program.

         The curriculum was presented by classroom teachers and covered topics including:

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• Introduction To Entrepreneurship

• What’s My Business

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• Who’s My Customer

• What’s My Advantage

• Competitive Advantages

• Ethics

• How To Create A Business Plan


         The students were then invited to submit their “crazy business idea” to the Challenge. Professors from Delgado reviewed the 120 business plans submitted and chose sixteen teams.

         They were judged on the following criteria:


• Is the product clearly described?

• Could this business be a sustainable business?

• Is it clear how this product will be made available to customers?

• Is it clear who the customer is?

• Is there a clear marketing strategy?

• Does the student show creativity?


         The sixteen teams then participated in weekly workshops, dinner was provided by Delgado Community College (Samantha’s Kitchen) and mentors were brought in to speak to the students in an effort to bring the real business world to them. Volunteers who inspired the students by talking about their passions, product development, pitches and presentation skills, morals, values and ethics and their own entrepreneurial journeys included:


• Brain Greffenius, Sandler Training

• Denny Bro, retired entrepreneur

• Lisa Lloyd, Shark Tank winner from Lloyd Marketing Group

• Stirling Barrett, Idea Village NOEW semi-finalist, photographer and from KREWE du optic

• Rod West, Entergy

• Tommy McMahon, Eustis Insurance and Benefits

• Larry Closs, MaxHome

• Diedra Dias, Ochsner Health System


         Students have continued to develop their concept and perfect their presentation. On Wednesday, March 4, 4 final teams will be selected to continue on to the finals on March 21.

         For more information



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