United Farmers of Alberta Co-operative Ltd. (“UFA”) is pleased to announce that Olds College students Daniel Stefner, Kenneth Deocampo, Lauren McKamey, Styn Nieuwenhuis and Tristen Norman have been named semi-finalists in the second annual UFA Student Pitch Competition.
As part of their entry into the competition, students were asked to submit a business model canvas and pitch deck presenting an innovative ag idea to move forward into the final pitch competition, set to take place April 13, 2021. Each student received a $500 UFA reward, a $1,000 tuition credit and will be matched with an industry expert and mentor to help build out their business models for pitch day!
The pitch competition is a Dragon’s Den style competition where each student is given an opportunity to pitch their business model to a panel of judges. The winning pitch may have the opportunity to receive financial support to commercialize their idea or product with UFA.
In October of 2018, UFA announced a five-year, $500,000 commitment to Olds College and its focus on agriculture innovation and technology. UFA Innovation Day and the UFA Student Pitch Competition are pieces of the partnership which also includes funding the Olds College Smart Farm and the UFA Innovation Lab.
“Our partnership with Olds College brings together two long-standing advocates with rich agricultural history. Both of our organizations believe strongly in the power of innovation. We know that some of the best ideas come from young people and we are excited about this particularly unique project and the promise it holds for Alberta’s agriculture industry. We look forward to continuing to support the future leaders in agriculture and we are excited to hear the semi-finalists pitch their ideas in April,” said Rob Giguere, VP, Livestock Services & Market Strategy at UFA.
“We are very excited to partner with UFA once again to offer our students this incredible opportunity to develop their innovative ideas,” comments Stuart Cullum, President, Olds College. “Last year’s pitch competition really showcased the innovation and entrepreneurial spirit of our students at Olds. I am looking forward to hearing from our semi-finalists at this year’s competition. I would also like to thank UFA for their commitment to investing in the future of agriculture innovation and education.”
In 2020, Kadeema Jean, fourth year student in the Bachelor of Applied Science Agribusiness program at Olds College, won the competition with her pitch for DomCan Biodegradables. Since winning the competition, Kadeema has completed her program, is employed with UFA, and working towards further developing her company.
Congratulations to the semi-finalists for being selected to move forward to the UFA Student Pitch Competition! For more information on the event or how to get involved, please visit https://www.oldscollege.ca/student-life/ufa-innovation-day/index.html
The winner of the 2021 UFA Student Pitch Competition will be announced on April 13, 2020.