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Jenna Cody pitches winning idea at Lansing Youth Startup Challenge

Monday, March 28, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Eric Dimoff
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The Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) hosted the Lansing Youth Startup Challenge Expo on March 24, 2016 at The Lansing Center. More than 220 teachers, parents, friends and community members came out to cheer on the 94 teams, made up of 170 local middle and high school students, at this special business pitch competition.

The winning business plan, pitch, and product display, Struck by Eros Wedding Planning, LLC was presented by Jenna Cody of St. John’s High School (Clinton RESA program). Her wedding planning business brought all of the components together through her well-written business plan, intriguing pitch, and beautiful table display. She received the Champion Award and a $1,000 cash prize sponsored by Lake Trust Credit Union.

“These students are the region’s future CEO’s and executives. Each of them spent time to dream up these businesses and fully examine what it is like to be an entrepreneur. The level of professionalism from these students was astounding to witness,” said Tony Willis, Director of the New Economy Division at LEAP.

The Lansing Youth Startup Challenge Expo celebrates the entrepreneurial spirit in middle and high school students living in the tri-county region of Lansing.

Each student submitted an executive summary business plan and displayed and presented their business ideas to pairs of judges. Over 31 cash prizes were awarded to students, totaling over $12,000. Awards ranged from $1,000 grand champion, to $250 eco-friendly business, to $500 product-based business to name a few.

Each cash award was sponsored by a LEAP member company; sponsors included Lake Trust Credit Union, Sparrow Health System, LAFCU, TriTerra, Foster Swift Collins & Smith PC, MSU Federal Credit Union, Two Men and a Truck, Lansing Community College, Farm Bureau Insurance, and AF Group.

The Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP) is a coalition of area leaders committed to building a prosperous and vibrant region where business can thrive. To do this, we help entrepreneurs start new businesses, help existing businesses grow, and attract new businesses to the region. For more information about LEAP, please visit


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