National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship Announces Winners of National Student Competitions

Community college students won cash awards in national competitions run by the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship.

Springfield, MA, November 01, 2013 --( The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE), the nation’s leading organization focused on promoting entrepreneurship through community colleges, has announced the winners of its two inaugural annual national competitions for community college students who are actively pursuing entrepreneurship education at their schools. Students from throughout the country competed for cash prizes during the competitions, and winners were announced at NACCE’s Annual Conference, held in Charlotte, NC, in mid-October.

FastPitch Competition
The first-ever Student FastPitch Competition required student entrepreneurs to develop a short presentation (approximately five minutes), in which they succinctly got their message across to potential “investors.” To enter, students had to submit an executive summary of their business idea. A panel of judges selected the best entries, which advanced to the semi-finals. Semi-finalists presented their FastPitch elevator presentations at the NACCE2013 Conference. This competition was generously supported by the John E. and Jeanne T. Hughes Foundation and Catawba Valley Community College, Hickory, NC.

The winner of NACCE’s 2013 Student FastPitch Competition is Michelle Bernard, of Catawba Valley Community College. She was awarded $1,000 for her FastPitch presentation on her business, Spellcast Farm, which she plans to become an integrated, sustainable farming model to convert plant materials.

Other NACCE Student FastPitch Competition contenders receiving awards include:

2nd place, winning $600 - Sebrina Brooks, Catawba Valley Community College, for “A Peaceful Passage Transportation Service,” which offers reliable, economical transport services at the end of life.

3rd place, winning $400 - Joyce Mallery, Dakota County Technical College, Rosemount, MN, for “DJ Bungee Thing-a-ma-Jigs,” which will manufacture reusable, eco-friendly shock cord fasteners.

4th place, winning a $200 gift certificate - Paul Fuselier, Catawba Valley Community College, for his business, Truck Stop, which will be a full-service, destination truck stop for truck drivers in North Carolina. Augusoft, which donated the gift certificate, is an enrollment management software, and has been a long-time sponsor of NACCE’s annual conference.

Video Essay Contest
The NACCE2013 Student Video Essay Contest was designed to empower students to proactively engage in developing the future of entrepreneurship in their education programs on campus. For this first-ever competition, students prepared a one-to-three-minute-video on a selected topic that demonstrated the approach they would take to promote entrepreneurship at their community college. The winner of the NACCE2013 Student Video Essay Contest is Natasha Salley, of Indian River State College, Fort Pierce, FL. She received $1,000 for her video in which she talked about her desire to move from the classroom to the boardroom and how learning by doing in the incubator at IRSC’s Brown Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation could help her achieve this goal.

Coming in as the runner-up in the video contest was a group of students from the CEO Club at North Iowa Area Community College in Mason City, IA. Team members were Dieuwertje Boelen, Mason Powers, Rebecca Herwig, Brady Christianson, Jordan Rutherford, William O'Loughlin, and Jordan Van Horn. Their video was about the 2004 creation of the CEO Club at NIACC; CEO stands for College Entrepreneurs’ Organization. According to the team members, “CEO is a chance for young upstarts to put forward their business ideas, refine their resumes, and become better readied for an adult work place in an adult world.”

The winning videos can be viewed at The Student Video Essay Contest was sponsored by NACCE and the George R. and Martha Means Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at Illinois State University.

The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) is an organization of educators, administrators, presidents and entrepreneurs, focused on inciting entrepreneurship in their community and on their campus. NACCE has two main goals: 1. Empower the college to approach the business of running a community college with an entrepreneurial mindset, and 2. Grow the community college’s role in supporting job creation and entrepreneurs in their local ecosystem.

Founded in 2002, NACCE is at the heart of the "entrepreneurship movement.” Through membership, an annual conference and exhibition, regional summits, a quarterly journal, monthly webinars, a dynamic list-serv, and training resources, NACCE serves as the hub for the dissemination and integration of knowledge and successful practices regarding entrepreneurial leadership, entrepreneurship education and student business incubation. These initiatives and resulting actions advance economic prosperity in the communities served by its member colleges. NACCE is a founding member of the White House-led Startup America Partnership. For more information, visit

Follow us at @NACCE, like us on, and join our LinkedIn group.

NACCE has over 300 member colleges, representing nearly 2,000 members and approximately 465,000 students.
National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship
Jeanne Yocum