Business Concept Challenge winner named

Huntington, Ind.—Wednesday, Venture Works announced the winners of the Huntington County Business Concept Challenge for Huntington North High School and Huntington University students.

The first place winner of $750 dollars is Candy Creations by Amanda Kaiser. The second place winner of $500 is Collegiate Cuisine by Molly Shirey. The third place winner of $250 is Vivacious Veggies by Shelly Bradbury.

(left to right) Second place winner Molly Shirey accepts her award from Kay Schwob, director of Venture Works.
“I am very grateful to Venture Works and Huntington University for bringing this competition to Huntington North High School,” said Cole Christman, HNHS business teacher. “This challenge encouraged my students to create their own business concept and allowed them to think about starting their own business one day. It’s exciting to see a freshman in high school win a collegiate competition. I’m very proud of her.”

The purpose of the program, according to Joanne Green, Huntington University and Venture Works representative, “is to encourage young entrepreneurs to explore what it takes to launch a new venture or expand an existing one.”

(left to right) Third place winner Shelly Bradbury accepts her award from Kay Schwob, director of Venture Works.
Sixteen business concepts were submitted, with the top five finalists being chosen. Entries for the competition were judged on (1) the idea; (2) the market; (3) innovativeness; (4) overall college graduate level job creation impact of the idea; and (5) overall impression.

The top five business concepts include the following:

Collegiate Cuisine is a service created by Molly Jo Shirey, a Huntington University student. Her concept is a food preparation service provided by college students.

Candy Creations is a concept created by Huntington North High School student, Amanda Kaiser. Her business concept is a candy store where customers create, design, mix and match their candy favorites.Related Stories

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Chocolate Paradise by Bethany McGraw, a Huntington University student, is a chocolate shop that provides chocolate desserts that can be designed to fit a customers’ exact specifications.

Vivacious Veggies by Shelly Bradbury, a Huntington University student, offers a service that would provide fresh, well-prepared and delicious vegetables to college students. Bradbury is a freshman journalism major from Houghton, N.Y.

The Town Hall Theatre Co. is an organization developed by Huntington University students Matthew Kaestner, Andrew Edmonds, Matthias Austin, Alicia Bonham and Nathan Capriglione. Their idea is to create a high-quality independent community theatre utilizing the talents from within the community.

All competition finalists received a copy of the book “Art of the Start” by Guy Kowasaki.

Venture Works is a resource center for entrepreneurs established by Huntington County United Economic Development (HCUED), in partnership with Huntington University, Northeast Indiana Innovation Center (NIIC), Huntington County Commissioners, Huntington County Chamber of Commerce and additional funding from the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs.

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Huntington University is a comprehensive Christian college of the liberal arts offering graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 70 academic concentrations. U.S.News & World Report ranks Huntington among the best colleges in the Midwest. Founded in 1897 by the Church of the United Brethren in Christ, Huntington University is located on a contemporary, lakeside campus in northeast Indiana. The University is a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU).  


Heather Barkley
Director of Communications
Joanne Green
Sports Information Director