Think Shark Tank, and you pretty much have an idea of what it was like for four Notre Dame Preparatory juniors when they pitched their idea to a panel of professional judges at national Seed Spot Demo Day on May 14 at Tempe Center for the Arts.
Their idea is a new app and website designed to help people overcome social anxiety. The innovation is called Social Bud.
Christopher Griffin, Chris Bateman, Colton Baldwin and Calvin Bicket took NDP’s entrepreneur class this year with business instructor Sheila Martinez. Through the class, they conceived their idea for Social Bud and entered the nationwide Seed Spot school competition.
More than 50 schools from California to New Jersey started the competition. And after two rounds, the field was whittled down to just 12 teams who competed in Demo Day. The students pitched their ideas to a panel of judges from various professional fields. Social Bud won the Audience Impact Award and for the students $5,000 to continue to develop their idea.
"I was very excited for the opportunity to participate in the Seed Spot curriculum through Notre Dame Prep,” Griffin said. “The process gave our team a unique view of the challenges it takes to run a business and be successful entrepreneurs.”
SocialBud portrays scenarios that often cause people stress and helps them learn how to deal with the issues. It offers coping mechanisms to overcome various social and business situations.
Their goal is that SocialBud will help people live better lives.
The experience was eye-opening for the NDP teens.
“During my time at Seed Spot I not only learned about what it means to be an entrepreneur but also what it means to face adversity and overcome challenges,” Bicket said. “This will help me in all aspects of my life.”
Seed Spot is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting all social entrepreneurs who create a product, service, or technology that improves lives or makes the world a better place. They work with schools to support student entrepreneurs by surrounding them with the right access to resources, mentors, business fundamentals, community partners, capital sources, and anything they need to succeed.