Prize-winners using EMBA to boost their businesses

USC EMBA students Wayne Bluck & Caroline Campbell
USC EMBA students Wayne Bluck & Caroline Campbell

Two University of the Sunshine Coast students are using their EMBA experiences to boost their local businesses.

Sunshine Coast residents, Caroline Campbell and Wayne Bluck, have been encouraged to enhance their business aspirations after both winning major prizes in the School of Business’ Plan Pitch Competition.

Ms Campbell and Mr Bluck impressed judges with their pitches and preparation, designed to secure investor interest in the start-up businesses they intent to launch this year.

Ms Campbell won the Brisbane Angel Network investor prize, giving her the opportunity to develop her business as well as receiving the guidance of technology investor Mark Ferris.

“The university has given me an incredible opportunity to continue my innovation through the School of Business prize,” Ms Campbell said.

“To finish my EMBA is one thing but to also receive acknowledgement that I am on the right track is a great vote of confidence in my work.”

Ms Campbell plans on using her new EMBA skills and knowledge along with the guidance of Mark Ferris to work on her online-based business, a service designed to connect event-holders with potential sponsors.

Mr Bluck also looks forward to beginning his new venture after being awarded a mentoring prize from the Innovation Centre Sunshine Coast.

Using his EMBA experience and prize, Mr Bluck hopes to strengthen the business strategy his pending patent rests on. As an experienced property entrepreneur, he is now delving into the materials handling field creating a patent on an invention.

“While I can’t discuss the details of the patent, I am grateful for the opportunity to further develop my product with mentoring support from the Innovation Centre,” he said.

USC lecturer in Entrepreneurship Dr Retha Scheepers said the success of these students had exceeded her expectations, showing encouraging signs of the school’s curriculum providing successful, real-world outcomes.

“The School of Business strives to bring together industry and academic experts to provide students with exciting, relevant and authentic learning experiences,” Dr Scheepers said.

“Our close collaboration with Mark Ferris (Brisbane Angel Network) and Dean Alle (Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the Innovation Centre) enables these opportunities and further reinforces USC as a leading university for innovation and entrepreneurship in Australia.”

The competition marked the completion of Mr Bluck’s and Ms Campbell’s two-year EMBA with the University of the Sunshine Coast.

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Ben Ready founded MBA News in 2014 and is the Managing Editor. He is a former business and finance journalist with Australian Associated Press (AAP) and Dow Jones Newswires in London. Ben completed his MBA in 2012 and was awarded the QUT GMAA Entrepreneurship Prize. He is also the founder and Managing Director of RGC Media & Mktng (rgcmm.com.au).

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