Chelsea Padgham, Senior in Economics, Wins First Place
in the Vol Court Fall 2013 Competition
First place went to Style with Benefits.� Looking for a way to combine a for-profit business with social consciousness, Chelsea Padgham, a senior at UT majoring in Economics created Style with Benefits, an on-line retailer that purchases products from the artisans in developing countries and contributes a portion of the profits to smaller, often overlooked, social cause organizations in the region. “People want products that support good causes”, says Padgham, “my business model helps the artisans in developing countries and social cause organizations here at home.” Padgham acknowledges that similar businesses exists but feels that she can effectively compete by incorporating “Karma Points” that reward customers by allowing them to earn points that can be redeemed for future products with each purchase. More information can be found at www.stylewithbenefits.org.
Eight teams went head-to-head in the fall 2013 Vol Court pitch competition recently with the first place team receiving $1,000 to move its business forward, space at the University of Tennessee Research Foundation (UTRF) business incubator, consulting services from Pershing Yoakley and Associates, legal services from the Morehous Legal Group, and mentoring from the Haslam College of Business’s Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (ACEI) and Launch Tennessee �a prize package worth more than $5,000.� The second place team will win $500, space in the UTRF business incubator, legal services from the Morehous Legal Group, and mentoring from ACEI and Launch Tennessee.
Vol Court is a speaker series and pitch competition presented by the Haslam College of Business’s Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and sponsored by UT Federal Credit Union, UT Research Foundation, Morehous Legal Group PLLC, Pershing Yoakley & Associates and Launch Tennessee.� The goal of the program is to help people develop new business ideas and gain entrepreneurial skills. Speakers include entrepreneurs, investors, and subject matter experts who address how to evaluate a business opportunity, how to make money, and how to pitch the idea to potential investors.
Vol Court is offered every fall and spring semester and is open to students, faculty and the general public.
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