Wolff Center Students Earn Accolades At National Business Plan Competitions

Published on April 15, 2008
Brian Heitz, left, and Matthew Clark are two students in a long line of those from the Department of Marketing & Entrepreneurship who have won national business plan competitions.

Brian Heitz, left, and Matthew Clark are two students in a long line of those from the Department of Marketing & Entrepreneurship who have won national business plan competitions.

The tradition of putting lessons learned in the classroom to practical use has continued for students in the marketing & entrepreneurship department at the C. T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston.

Brian Heitz and Matthew Clark, both students at the Wolff Center for Entrepreneurship, recently won awards at two national business plan competitions. The team placed third in the business plan competition and first in the “elevator pitch” competition at the Northwest Venture Championship Competition in Boise, Ida.

An “elevator pitch” is a quick, concise overview of an idea or product that can be pitched in the time span of an elevator ride. The students also placed third in the Nascent 500 Business Plan Challenge at Ball State University.

“The secret to winning these competitions is preparation and knowing your business,” Heitz said. “WCE gives you exposure for the type of thinking and thought processes needed for starting an entrepreneurship venture. And they provide the mentors for the competition process.”

Clark agreed, noting that the courses offered through the Wolff Center provide the perfect platform for honing the skills it takes to win such competitions. “You have to have a business you believe in and make it as real as possible before the competitions,” he added. “WCE provided us with the resources both inside and outside the University of Houston to research and solidify our business concept.”

Bauer College of Business WCE students have won 14 awards in national business plan competitions over the past 7 years surpassing any other college.

“The fact that we have won so consistently tells you two things: first, that we have great students, and second, that we have a great program that consistently prepares them to compete,” said Dr. Edward Blair, chairman of the Department of Marketing & Entrepreneurship.

By Debi Ostrom

About the University of Houston

The University of Houston, Texas’ premier metropolitan research and teaching institution, is home to more than 40 research centers and institutes and sponsors more than 300 partnerships with corporate, civic and governmental entities. UH, the most diverse research university in the country, stands at the forefront of education, research and service with more than 35,000 students.

About the Bauer College of Business

The C.T. Bauer College of Business has been in operation for more than 60 years at the University of Houston main campus. Through its five academic departments, the college offers a full-range of undergraduate, masters and doctoral degrees in business. The Bauer College is fully accredited by the AACSB International – the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. In August 2000, Houston business leader and philanthropist Charles T. (Ted) Bauer endowed the College of Business with a $40 million gift. In recognition of his generosity, the college was renamed the C.T. Bauer College of Business.