Photo of Polar Pitch Winners

Ohio Northern University had 71 teams showcase their entrepreneurial spirit in this semester’s Polar Innovation Exchange elevator pitch competition on April 17, 2024.

Student-led groups created a unique product for the marketplace and pitched it in under two minutes followed by a two-minute question session. It’s 鶹APP’s own version of the “Shark Tank” minus the millionaire and billionaire investors.

Professor Kevin M. Ernst, assistant professor of management and entrepreneurship, organized the event with the assistance of volunteer judges.

The campus-wide competition started in 2008 and runs every semester, explained Ernst, with cash prizes awarded to first, second, and third place.

“It provides student with a chance to explore the concepts of marketing and presentational speaking by pitching the idea and business model to a panel of judges,” he said.

This semester's winners were the Yolk Perfecto, Frost Fusion Controller, and Sensory Schedule. First place prize went to the Yolk Perfecto, created by Emily Bollinger, pharmaceutical and healthcare business; Claire Bugger, construction management; Isabella Crego, public relations and marketing; Leah Cupp, construction management; and Andrew Vest, sport management.

The proposed kitchen gadget is a silicon mold designed to go on the outside of eggs when boiling them. The team’s product was based on thermochromic technology that changes color as the egg is cooked. The team was inspired to create their product when cooking Easter eggs. They wanted to design a product that made the timing of hard-boiling eggs easier to determine.

Emily Bollinger said, “It was so exciting and unexpected to win the Polar Pitch. Many of my group members and I love to cook and try new gadgets. I kept thinking, ‘what new invention would make my life easier?’ and then the Yolk Perfecto popped into my head!”

Second place prize went to the Frost Fusion Controller, created by Corey Jeanor, finance; Karson Lang, finance; Kaleb Marciszewski, construction management; Seamus McPhee, construction management; and Colten Spurgeon, construction management.

The proposed PC accessory is a gaming controller designed with coolant inside to prevent sweaty hands, which can make it difficult to hold a controller during intense gaming.

Third place prize went to the Sensory Schedule, created by Jonah Bees, electrical engineering; Carter Hale, language arts education; Anthony Lahoski, mechanical engineering; Tyler Pozsonyi, civil engineering; and Noah Zimmerman, mechanical engineering.

The proposed academic aid was a reusable schedule designed to be interactive for students with disabilities. The team was inspired to create the product after they visited the Marimor School in Lima, Ohio, for their Polar Pitch 2024, Foundation of Design course. They used input from teachers at the school and previous teachers to make the design useable for students with disabilities.