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Judson Senior Wins Annual Shark Tank Event

(ELGIN, Ill. – November 19, 2021) Judson University’s eighth Judson Shark Tank event held on November 18 at Herrick Chapel was energized by great ideas for new products and services by the contestants.

Emceed by Senior Lynsie Pietrzak, a scholar-athlete on Judson’s Golf Team, and watched by more than 100 students and guests in person and another 150 participants online, the two-hour event included six student leaders majoring in Business and Architecture who pitched their ideas in front of three judges representing various facets of business.

Lizeth Shark Tank 2021 WinnerThe judges included Kristen Tews, co-founder and Chief Business Officer of Noteworthy; Michael Storey, co-founder and Managing Partner of Becket Solutions, a leading U.S. distributing company that specializes in additive manufacturing 3D printing; and Angel Szalonek, manager of Inc Tank Management Consultants and President and CEO of SportsFaith, an online magazine and podcast production company.

After hearing from six student entrepreneurs, Senior Lizeth Medina Diaz of Ixtapan De La Sal, Mexico, won the $1,000 first-place prize for “Grad-In,” an app to help students seeing graduate assistance opportunities for all academic areas and not just athletics.

Shark Tank Group 2021Other winners of the night included senior Eliana Sarver of Villa Park, Ill., who won the $500 second-place prize for her idea for “FitMe,” a fashion AI app that helps you find the clothing and brands that fit your specific body types. Senior Pedro Rodrigues of Resende, Brazil, took home third-place honors of $250 for his “Joga Experience” that would give high school and college-aged soccer students in the United States the opportunity to attend sports camps and play against other soccer teams in Brazil. Senior Edgar Castillo of Carpentersville, Ill., received the Fan Favorite prize for his “Bathroom Break,” a GPS app that informs users of the nearest public bathroom and allows institutions to post if their bathrooms are available.

The night’s contestants included senior Thomas Donati from Rousset, France, who created “My Mechanic,” an app that troubleshoots car problems, and sophomore Trey Lehman of Berne, Ind., who pitched “Cold Roll,” a tool to help athletes use a cool substance and a roller to help them work sore spots following a workout or competition.

The evening’s events also featured the magical talents of Adam Sean Boutelle and the announcement of this year’s participants as Judson’s interns of the Chicago Auto Show, an annual opportunity available only to a select group of students. The event was sponsored by Thrivent and organized by students in Judson’s Event Planning class.

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