By Grace Mize – There have been several exciting developments taking place in the William Jewell Community that are connected to the IDEA X-Change. There are students, staff, and alumni who have worked on successful creative projects and are being recognized for their achievements.
During her time at Jewell, 2016 graduate Conner Hazelrigg launched her own company called 17º 73º Innovation Co. In an effort to provide aid to victims of crises and people living in underdeveloped areas, this company produces an innovative product called the Sunshine Box, which uses solar energy to portably charge multiple devices at once. As CEO of a successful startup, Hazelrigg was invited to speak at a Global Entrepreneurship Week event to discuss how she was able to make an impact with her concept. In March, her company was awarded a $25,000 grant from Energy Sandbox, which supports local startups in the energy sector.
Easton Koch, a junior Business student, will soon be launching his own clothing line called “easton k. kansas city”. Koch became inspired to pursue this passion after participating in a creativity and innovation class in the IDEA X-Change taught by Professor Landon Young. On May 10, Koch had an opportunity to pitch his brand to a group of investors in hopes of receiving funding for upcoming costs of production. He presented a 70-page publication regarding his fall collection, a thorough analysis of financial needs, as well as physical pieces from his collection. His goal is to raise $25,000, which will fund branding intangibles as well as his fall production run. (More about the outcome of the presentation next issue.)
In hopes of inspiring students to chase their dreams like Conner and Easton have, William Jewell provided an online Design Thinking and Innovation course during the fall semester. About 300 high school students across several states participated in this course, which was taught by Landon Young. According to Young, a few students involved in the University Innovation Fellows program were able to assist him with the administration of this course and it was extremely successful and educational for the students who learned from them.