Since 2010 McPherson College has been encouraging the entrepreneurial ideas of its students by awarding mini-grants that help students develop innovative solutions to common problems. With more than 250 grants awarded, the college recently announced the latest recipients of the Horizon Fund Grants.
This spring, the Horizon Fund is providing 10 grants to 11 students with ideas ranging from an on-campus coffee shop and online design company to a travel blog. The individual grants range from $100 to $500 and students have the opportunity to reapply for continued funding of an existing Horizon Fund project.
Abbey Archer-Rierson, chief of staff and head of the entrepreneurship program at McPherson College, said, “The Horizon Fund grant is just one of the many ways that McPherson College demonstrates its commitment to entrepreneurship and supporting entrepreneurial students on our campus. The grants have supported a variety of wildly creative ideas and this most recent round of funding is no exception.”
Any McPherson College student, in any major of study is eligible for the grant, whether individually or as part of a team. Grant proposals are considered each semester and evaluated by a team of faculty and staff that interview each applicant.
Recipients of the spring 2019 Horizon Fund grants are:
- Victoria Gonzales, Elementary Education, Keller, Texas – Coffee stand on campus, “I will provide a variety of drinks and snacks including vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. I will meet the needs of the students.”
- Xander Lehn, Automotive Restoration Technology, Sacramento, California – Metal Garage, “Many classic cars had options and accessories when they were new but as they age, fewer and fewer businesses offer what collectors really want. My market is focused on people who like to use their classic cars for things other than just shows.”
- Alex Ramsier, Automotive Restoration Technology/Management, Wooster, Ohio – Restoration Shop, “My idea is different because I am a young entrepreneur still in college looking to build an automotive business, when most students wait until after graduation or later to build a business.”
- Francis Abate, Automotive Restoration Technology, Steamboat Springs, Colorado – Electrical business for automotive restoration, “The restoration and preservation of automobiles and related vehicles is a growing marketplace and the skills needed to repair these cars and trucks are becoming increasingly harder to find. My automotive restoration education is giving me the foundation necessary in order to serve this growing need.”
- Rick Sakamoto, Business Management, Frankston, South Australia – Coffee stand on campus, “The idea is to start a coffee stand on campus with a menu that includes several different options to cater to a wide variety of students, staff, and visitors. It would operate one to two hours each morning including weekends.”
- Mason Duffey, Automotive Restoration Technology/Communications, Bellbrook, Ohio – Automotive media equipment, “I want to go into automotive media after I graduate and had the idea to create my own internship by traveling the country this summer writing, photographing, and videoing my journey in order to build my professional portfolio.”
- Amanda Lolling, Business, accounting/marketing and Graphic Design, Haysville, Kansas; and Matt Bouwkamp, Graphic Design, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma – Online graphic design, “We would like to meet the affordable art need. Artwork, especially personalized is often quite expensive. We would like to offer beautiful creations at an affordable price.”
- Moneshya Green, Digital Media: Visual Design, McCook, Nebraska – Host family network for students, “My idea is to have ‘adoptive’ families for students who are a long way from home. The host families could possibly gain a babysitter, house sitter, or pet sitter, while the student could gain home-cooked meals, rides, and just a family to fill-in until they are able to go home.”
- Jeremiah Greene, Automotive Restoration Technology, Farragut, Iowa – Upholstery shop, “It is something I am passionate about and there is a shortage of trimmers. I think my passion and skill set will set me apart from other students or businesses.”
- Stef Krsmanovic, Health Science, Gornji Milanovac, Serbia – Recruiting students from Serbia, “I think it is a unique idea because I’ll do something that is going to promote McPherson College in a whole different world.”
- Ian Rhoten, Graphic Design/studio, Wichita, Kansas – Writing and illustrating a children’s book, “My book would be a meaningful adventure for children to experience with depth to interest adults. Children can understand more than most people give them credit for. My book is not only for them to process and understand, but for adults to mull over as well.”