Farmer students assist start-up companies at Startup Slam

November 2013

Recently, some Farmer students had the opportunity to make a difference at two Cincinnati start-ups: Kapture, a company that makes wristbands that record up to 60 seconds of audio, and 3LDT, an online 3D printing marketplace.

The Cintrifuse University Startup Slam is an event sponsored by Cintrifuse, a Cincinnati-based company that strives to be a driver for economic development and to help startup enterprises in the Cincinnati area. The Slam brought together students from five different schools in the region (Miami University, the University of Cincinnati, Xavier University, Northern Kentucky University, and the College of Mount St. Joseph) to help start-ups 3LDT and Kapture work out business solutions. One student from each school comprised a team, and six teams competed in the Slam. One team was chosen as a winner for each startup.

The two Farmer students that were a part of the winning teams were senior Marketing major and Entrepreneurship minor Oliver Coffey and senior Marketing major Brett Watson. They were both excited to have this opportunity to work so closely with real-world companies on such important problems. They both stressed how integral it was for them to get these kinds of experiences as students.

"Startup Slam was an intense and awesome day," Oliver said. "The ideas we were able to come up with in such a short time span were remarkable. I was able to network with the many mentors and with fellow students from various universities. Startup Slam was full of real-world experiences. Having to beat the clock is one thing when it comes to schoolwork but to pitch an idea that will be implemented is another. I was able to take what I have learned at Miami and apply it to 3DLT's problem. That's as real as it gets."

"I thought it was an incredible experience and is something every student should go through regardless of their major," Brett said. "In the real world, you are put on teams with people you don't know and given problems you've never seen, and you have to overcome them. This experience let us do that for a company that needed this problem solved in the best way possible. This was more than just an exercise: the Kapture team is putting our recommendation into practice as we speak."

"I now am more confident to know that I can solve any problem that might come my way and that I have value to add to companies in my ability to act, adapt, and react quickly to problems that I have never faced," Brett said. "The art of entrepreneurship and the skills that it entails are valuable in any business situation."