• 2019-2020 Awards and Recognition

  • Each spring, we hold an expo and awards event to showcase our entrepreneurs, announce scholarships, and recognize achievements from the academic year. Given the current COVID-19 situation and campus closures, this recognition has been pivoted to a virtual approach. We are hopeful that we will all be able to celebrate together in Fall 2020.

  • Awards and Scholarships

    Congratulations LaunchNET Award Recipients!

    Marty Erbaugh Student Entrepreneur Scholarship:


    Paul L. Pfeiffer Student Startup Scholarship:


    Paul L. Pfeiffer Faculty Mentor Award:


    More information on all of the awards and winners can be found here.

  • Pitch Competition Winners

    Idea Olympics is LaunchNET's annual business concept competition. $4,000 in funding is up for grabs as Kent State students of any class levels or majors compete with their new ventures! The finalists this year were true entrepreneurs, pivoting their presentations for a virtual event due to state and campus closures in response to COVID-19.


    first place: $2,000
    Presented by:
    Daniel Issac, junior, Mechanical Engineering Technology and Paul Coulter, junior, Mechanical Engineering Technology


    second place: $1,000
    Presented by:
    Luke Leyden, sophomore, Computer Engineering Technology


    Advocates for Autism
    third place (tie): $500
    Presented by:
    Jordan Worrell, senior, Psychology and Music



    third place (tie): $500

    Presented by:

    Heeju Noe, graduate student, Fashion Industry Studies

    Entrepreneur's Organization Global Student Entrepreneur Awards Finals

    Gregory Joyce competed and took 2nd place at the Cleveland competition of the Entrepreneur's Organization Global Student Entrepreneur Awards in November!


    Congrats Gregory!!

    Gregory Joyce also placed 2nd, taking home $5,000 in the CEBI Pitch competition at Kent State! Congrats, Gregory!

    Elevator Pitch

    We once again jumped in the elevators in The University Library, to deliver our 90 second elevator pitches (business and personal). Over 30 students pitched themselves or a business idea. Four winners went home with $300 checks:


    Sarah Suntheimer, junior, mathematics
    Brianna Cotton, senior, fashion merchandising
    Cliford Fumbui, senior, business management
    Jillian Eddy, sophomore, engineering technology

    Congratulations to the finalists and winners of the 2nd annual FlashLab Innovation Pitch Contest. The competition came to a close Dec. 3 where seven students pitched their ideas and the judges crowned four winners. Each winning idea will share up to $10,000 from the Student Media Innovation Fund in order to launch, test and maintain their ideas in the coming months. LaunchNET is a partner on this Student Media event and our own Zach Mikrut served a judge for the event.


    1st Place – Tyshaia Earnest and Kylah Carter (Fashion Merchandising majors, Fashion Media minors)

    2nd Place – Aidan Taylor (DMP and Pan African Studies double major)

    3rd Place – Rachel Hale (PR major)



  • Thank You!

    We would like to give a special shout-out and thank you to all of our 2019-2020 student employees! LaunchNET would not have been able to produce these events and activities without your hard work throughout the year.

    Amrth Ashok Shenava

    Student Fellow

    Emily Gommel


    Javon Miller

    Student Fellow

    Janardhan Parimi

    Event Planning Assistant - EIW

    Kaitlyn McFadden

    Event Planning Assistant - Skyhack

    Madisen Mandell

    Student Fellow

    Morgan Hamlin


    Rhonda Baldwin

    Student Fellow

    Taylor Savage

    Student Fellow

  • Special Recognition

    LaunchNET clients in the Kent State Bookstore

    Anne Cate and bykatiek were both featured front and center in the Kent State Bookstore this month! Congrats Katie and Anne!

    Thirteen cross-disciplinary teams presented in the Kent State competition for Mission:Life in October. The winning team, Virtual Harmony, presented their concept in the international competition at the PUCPR University in Brazil on November 11.


    Virtual Harmony is a novel concept for a music therapy interface utilizing virtual reality. The team is made up of three Kent State students: Alena Miskinis, undergraduate student in Music and English, Xiangxu “Shawn” Lin, a graduate student in Computer Science, and Shadi Kanan, graduate student in the College of Nursing.



    Marty Erbaugh Student Entrepreneur Scholarship

    Thank you for all the support of the Marty Erbaugh Student Entrepreneur Scholarship! We are so pleased to be able to honor Marty's memory by supporting more student entrepreneurs in their collegiate journey.


    Thanks to our generous donors, we were able to raise $44k for a new student entrepreneur scholarship through this Giving Tuesday Campaign!

    Entrepreneurship Immersion Week

    From July 28 to August 2, 2019, forty students from ten different Northeast Ohio colleges and universities convened at Kent State to be immersed in an entrepreneurial experience like no other. For the five days and four nights students worked together, with faculty, staff, and regional business leaders, to create innovative solutions that address local industry and community challenges. The event is one of two major programs put on each year by the Entrepreneurship Education Consortium (EEC) and funded through the Burton D. Morgan Foundation. The event was hosted by LaunchNET Kent State, with support from University Libraries. Continued...

  • Thank you!

    A huge thanks to all of our

    entrepreneurs, collaborators, partners,

    mentors, supporters, and everyone!


    A special thank you to the Burton D. Morgan Foundation, University Libraries, our advisory board members, Office of the Provost, and all of our University partners for your support in 2019-2020!