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Eller College Home > News, Events, and Multimedia > Press Releases > McGuire Center hosts 2008 venture showcase

Press Release

Eller Press Contact

Liz Warren-Pederson
Eller College of Management

UA’s McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship hosts 2008 venture showcase

  • McGuire student teams vie for top honors in championship round of new venture competition
  • Arizona high school student finalists present business proposals

TUCSON, Ariz. – April 15, 2008 – The McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship at the Eller College of Management will host its year-end new venture competition and celebration on Friday, April 18, capping another stellar year for the top-ranked program. The event will celebrate the entrepreneurial achievements of business leaders, collegiate innovators, and high school stand-outs, and is free and open to the public.

“Entrepreneurial dreams are at the cornerstone of a vibrant economy,” said Sherry Hoskinson, director of the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship. “At the McGuire Center we work hard to advance those dreams, and every spring since 1985 we have come together as a community of students, mentors, and business leaders to celebrate what has been accomplished.”

Four student teams vie for top honors in championship round of new venture competition

The crème de la crème of this year’s McGuire Center student venture teams will compete for top honors during the From Idea to Reality: 2008 Spring Venture Development Showcase supported by CB Richard Ellis
The finalists were selected from 19 teams participating in the preliminary round held in late March. Finalists include new venture teams:

  • Cookie Fusion, cookie shops offering fresh, baked-to-order cookies featuring client-selected ingredients.
  • Fireguard Industries, an idea built around a revolutionary fire nozzle called VIPER which puts out fires 40% faster with 50% less water.
  • SkillIT, a Web 2.0 community which connects skilled college students with local community members in need of technology help.
  • UBike Incorporated, a venture concept that provides college campuses with automated bicycle rental kiosk systems for short-term commuter use.

The Idea Path®, a method that mirrors the real-world entrepreneurial process, is the process students use to develop and advance all of their innovative concepts, said Hoskinson. “Students are challenged to identify a problem and craft a unique, market-driven solution to address that problem. Everything comes together during the final presentations – it’s a very exciting time for everyone -- the students, their mentors, and the community.”

High school students present entrepreneurial business proposals

For the second year, Arizona high school students were invited to submit business plan proposals for the Arizona Youth Entrepreneurship Award. Ideas for new businesses came from all over the state, and three finalists were invited to campus to present their concepts. Awards totaling $5000 will be presented to the finalists. The students will also benefit from the feedback of a coaching panel. The 2008 finalists are:

  • Andres Squire is a junior at Sunrise Mountain High School in Peoria, Ariz. Her business plan, Cereal Café, will provide a quick, inexpensive breakfast for college students.
  • Cristy Martinez is a junior at Apache Junction High School. Her business plan, La Perfection, is a photography business focused on creating beautiful and unforgettable memories for its clients.
  • A third student, whose name cannot yet be released, is also a student at Apache Junction High School, Apache Junction, Ariz. The business plan is a retail store targeted for customers interested in rock and country music and includes guitars, drums, strings, and microphones.

All student presentations and the award reception will be held in McClelland Hall and are open to the public. Presentations begin at 1:00 p.m. with awards and reception following in the late afternoon. An RSVP is requested: or call 520.621.2576.

The Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona is internationally recognized for pioneering research, innovative curriculum, distinguished faculty, excellence in management information systems, entrepreneurship, and social responsibility. U.S. News & World Report ranks the Eller undergraduate program No. 11 among public business schools and two of its programs are among the top 20 — Entrepreneurship and MIS. U.S. News & World Report ranks the Eller MBA Full-Time program No. 48 in the U.S. In addition to a Full-Time MBA program, the Eller College offers the No. 25-ranked Evening MBA program, the Eller Executive MBA and the Online MBA. The Eller College of Management supports more than 5,800 undergraduate and 800 graduate students on the UA campus in beautiful Tucson, Arizona, and on its satellite campus in downtown Phoenix.

Press Contact:
Liz Warren-Pederson, Eller College of Management

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