Young innovators in 'shark tank' spotlight

Published 5:00pm 24 June 2022

Young innovators in 'shark tank' spotlight
Words by Jodie Powell

A marketing resource hub capturing the sentiment of youth culture, a sensory toy business aimed at neurodiverse people and a company striving to encourage people to make mental illness part of everyday conversation were among the ideas presented at a Shark Tank-style day at Murrumba State Secondary College this week.

Twenty-seven businesses pitched their ideas to three panels of “sharks” over the course of the day, receiving feedback and advice about their plans.

Among those on the panels were RSL Queensland Organisational Development manager Wendy Bird, University of the Sunshine Coast Accounting Undergraduate Program Co-ordinator Peter Baxter and Get Set Education owner Kate Walsh.

Wealth of innovation

Other ideas pitched to the panels included a business upcycling clothing into memory blankets, a car-washing business, an social enterprise providing care packages for homeless people and an injury prevention compression band.

The day was the culmination of 18 months of work by the Year 12 students involved in the school’s Innovations Project.

Murrumba State High School leader of learning for eLearning and Entrepreneurship and Innovation Rhiann Nelson says the Innovations Project is designed to develop students’ 21st Century skills and challenge them to be prepared for the workforce.

Scroll through to see the gallery

It’s been going for the past four years, with former students Tiarna McElligott and Owen Ventre winning the Youth Innovation Excellence Award at the 2021 Moreton Bay Business Excellence and Innovation Awards with a concept they’d been refining as part of the Innovations Project.

Rhiann says the students’ final Shark Tank presentation aimed to refine their next steps for their business and how the students could continue to improve their social and communication skills while in an ‘under-pressure’ setting.

*Moreton Daily senior content creator Jodie Powell was also a Shark Tank panelist.

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