Entrepreneurial College Students Part of Growing Start-up Culture in the Pioneer Valley

The Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation's Entrepreneurship Initiative has announced that 75 Pioneer Valley college students (representing 66 businesses) have been recognized for demonstrating entrepreneurial spirit by having launched a business or a well-developed business concept. They will be honored at the Foundation's annual banquet tonight, April 22nd, starting at 5:00 p.m. at The Log Cabin in Holyoke, MA.

Examples of the businesses are:

Lendlytics, Algorithm-based lending investment strategy, started by Kate Lowry, a student at Mt. Holyoke College.
ColorWheel: Life in Motion, Personalized wheelchair accessories, started by Hallie Smith and a team of fellow Smith College Students
Tailgaitor Systems, an all-in-one product for the ultimate tailgating experience, started by Nick Palermo, a student at American International College
Enyo Software, a mobile app and web development company, started by Ian Kennedy, a student at Western New England University
Fortunate Son Hot Sauce, several varieties of hot sauce, started by Matt Fortune, a student at UMass Amherst

Other highlights this evening include a Live Elevator Pitch Competition sponsored by community banks: Berkshire Bank, Country Bank for Savings, First Niagara Bank, PeoplesBank, and United Bank. One contestant from each of our 14 participating colleges will give a 90-second pitch hoping to win the first place prize of $1000. Our keynote speaker this year is Mr. Aaron St. John, Co-Founder and CEO of HitPoint Studios based in Springfield, MA.

A schedule for tonight's events is as follows:
5:00-6:15 - Entrepreneurs exhibit (all 66 businesses will be represented)
6:45-7:15 - Live Elevator Pitch Competition
7:50-8:20 - Keynote speaker
8:30-8:50 - Award Ceremony

Participating institutions for the Initiative which encourages entrepreneurship among college students include: American International College, Amherst College, Bay Path University, Elms College, Greenfield Community College, Hampshire College, Holyoke Community College, Mt. Holyoke College, Smith College, Springfield College, Springfield Technical Community College, University of Massachusetts, Western New England University, and Westfield State University.

The Entrepreneurship Initiative is one of several initiatives supported by the philanthropy of Mr. Harold Grinspoon. For more information about Harold Grinspoon Foundation initiatives, visit www.hgf.org.