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Ag Sciences Student Wins First Place for Improvements in Penn State 1000 Pitches contest

Posted: November 19, 2014

Ag Sciences student Jeanette Wiley won first place and five Ag Sci students were finalists in their categories in the 1000 Pitches contest.

Ag Sciences student Jeanette Wiley won first place in the improvements category for her pitch to create a mental health yoga/meditation space on campus during the 1000 Pitches contest.

Five Ag Sciences students were finalists in their respective categories and overall, Ag Sciences students contributed 83 pitches to Penn State’s 1081 pitches in the national competition, designed to inspire creativity and innovation among college students.

Awards are being announced Wednesday, Nov. 19, at a celebration event, 11:30 to 1:30 in the lobby of the Forest Resources Building.

All students who pitched should stop by to pick up a fleece beanie — perfect for the sudden, frigid temperatures — and enjoy snacks and refreshments.

“Ag Sci students can be very proud of their contribution to 1000 Pitches,” says Mark Gagnon, coordinator of the Entrepreneurship & Innovation Program at the College of Ag Sciences.

“We saw smart, high-quality pitches and Ag Sci students definitely helped Penn State reach its 100-pitch goal.”

The E&I Program, sponsors of Global Entrepreneurship Week at Penn State and the 1000 Pitches contest, launched Ag 300, a challenge to Ag Sci students to contribute 300 pitches to the event. While the final number of pitches fell short of the challenge goal, the quality was outstanding — and judges in the finale event agreed.

Elliott Killian was a finalist in the environment category for his compost/recycling consultancy pitch. Dinakaran Elango was a finalist in the health category for his pitch related to sorghum cheese. Alyssa Maxwell was a finalist in the mobile app category for her pitch to improve Penn State’s ANGEL course management system.

Amin Afzal was a finalist in the research category for “Leafy” a moisture sensor that attaches to plant leaves and improves water efficiency and plant health. Afzal’s device won the 2014 Ag Springboard contest.

Jacob Charles was a finalist in the research category for his pitch for an automated apple harvester.

Once a great idea forms, the next step is to work to make it happen. E&I can help. Teams for the Ag Springboard business plan competition will be forming in the next few weeks. E-mail Mark Gagnon at mag199@psu.edu