SFU Surrey's Beedie School of Business will host Opportunity Fest on April 11.

SFU Surrey's Beedie School of Business will host Opportunity Fest on April 11.

Business student ventures showcased at Opportunity Fest

SFU Surrey event April 11 will feature commercial, sustainable and social projects.

Entrepreneurially minded students will have the chance to present their venture ideas to industry experts during Simon Fraser University Surrey’s second annual Opportunity Fest.

Hosted by the Beedie School of Business, the event will be held on Apr. 11 from 6-9 p.m. in the mezzanine of SFU’s Surrey campus.

Building on the success of last year’s event, more than 100 students from the Beedie School will participate in the marketplace-style exhibition in one of three venture categories: commercial, sustainable and social ventures.

Students will present their class-produced ventures through trade-show exhibits that include product prototypes, videos, graphical display boards and more.

Judges from industry, academia and the wider business community will evaluate the student ventures and express their financial interest or commitment through investment of emulated venture capital dollars.

Last year’s competition was won by Aspire, a venture which aims to provide meaningful employment opportunities for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Developed by Beedie undergraduate students Alice Chen, Matt Armstrong, Joanne Chen, Robbie Hsieh and Justin Findley, Aspire leverages the characteristics of autism as a competitive advantage in the software testing industry, creating a sustainable and nurturing work environment for ASD sufferers.

Second place at last year’s competition went to Ratemylot.com, a website which assists motorists in finding safe, convenient and clean parking lots, while third place went to Bloggle, a product which combines traditional ski goggles and a bluetooth headset.

“Opportunity Fest is like a Capstone experience for these undergraduate students,” says business professor Eric Gedajlovic. “In today’s interconnected world, where things are happening so rapidly and your plans are outdated as soon as they are established, success and growth depends on your ability to continuously identify and pursue opportunities.”

This year, $1,000 will be awarded to the top teams in each venture category, while the male and female student presenting the best pitch to the judges will also be awarded with the title of Mr. or Ms. Opportunity and will receive a networking lunch with the industry judges.

Surrey North Delta Leader