And the Winner Is...Six Students Compete in “Shark Tank” Style Business Plan Competition

  • Entrepreneurship
  • Financial Literacy
  • The Aspen Difference
Theresa Letman

Creating Business Plans, Creating and Selling Products, and Pitching Business Builds Lifelong Confidence and Self-Reliance for Students.

After making it through two rounds of “shark tank,” pitching their businesses to successful entrepreneurs last week, six 8th Grade students were selected for the final round of pitching today at Aspen Academy. Students received coaching, counsel and were asked tough questions by local celebrity entrepreneur judges whose careers span industries from retail to healthcare. The finalists’ businesses range from baked goods for one and lip scrubs to an iPhone app and customized athletic apparel.

The student businesses are a capstone project for 8th Graders and the culmination of the Aspen Entrepreneurial Institute (AEI). Through the AEI curriculum, students are exposed to a wide variety of lifelong financial skills that they take into the world for their personal savings and to contribute to the greater world. 

The sense of pride, confidence, resilience, and joy these students have as a result is palpable. “Creating this business took a lot of patience and concentration. I have learned so many public speaking skills, not only selling my product but, also presenting in front of the judges. I will continue to use these skills throughout my life for future presentations, sales pitches, and beyond. It’s been a wonderful experience overall and has taught me so many things.”  – Malia Bulloch, CEO & Founder, Aloha Lips (lip scrubs)

“I have learned many things about creating a business. One of which was that nothing goes to plan…There have been many bumps along the way, but they have helped form my business to what it is today. Nothing will ever go as planned in business and it's up to you on how you deal with it.” – Rhyan Schaff, CEO & Founder off All Clear (back-up camera cleaner)

 “This project is just one example of how Aspen Academy students are empowered to do good, work hard, and make the world better. They are building the capabilities that will serve them in uncertain and highly technical global economy,” says Kristina Scala, Founder & CEO of Aspen Academy. “Further, they’re learning their strengths and how to position themselves as leaders, as well as how to bring an idea to life.”


And the winner is...

Kylie Schultz was named the 1st place winner for her app, X Factor Sports. Kylie intends to use the proceeds from winning to expand her market beyond Colorado into other states. When asked what she's learned about herself through this process, Kylie noted: "I learned that I'm a quick study. I learned to code to be able to create this app." Congratulations, Kylie. Your efforts inspire us all.

Second Place Winners: Ryhan Schaff, All Clear & Ella Shofnos, Babycakes Colorado

Third Place Winner: Malia Bulloch, Aloha Lips


Kidtrepreneurs: Learning Life Skills Early

The AEI curriculum culminates for 8th graders when these create business plans. Most recently, two former students went on to win and place as finalist(s) in Young American’s Center for Financial Education YouthBiz Stars award for businesses they started while at Aspen Academy and have continued to operate (Rudspice & Laney’s Lipcare). With artificial intelligence, advances in technology, and other disruptive forces in the world economy, these students are learning skills that will enable them to be self-sufficient and have a strong financial literacy to thrive in business and life.


Learn more about the Aspen Entrepreneurial Institute