Babson Hosts BETA Semifinals for On-Campus Start-Ups
Last Wednesday, Babson hosted its annual BETA Challenge semifinals, bringing together 18 businesses started by current undergraduate and graduate students, as well as alumni. The BETA Challenge first started in 2012 to recognize student entrepreneurs and their achievements. Winners from each division (undergraduate, graduate, and alumni) receive $20,000 in cash and in-kind services, with select teams winning a $2,500 cash prize.
More than 60 entrants began this year’s competition; I had the chance to talk with Emily Levy ’16 and Julianne Carlin ’17, who represented Emily’s company PICCPerfect at the BETA Challenge semifinals:
JB: Tell me more about PICCPerfect.
EL: PICCPerfect creates after-market medical accessories for patients going through long-term treatment. Our first product is the PICCPerfect PICC line cover, which allows patients to safely and securely protect their PICC line and do their treatment without having to expose their insertion site. Our covers are antimicrobial, moisture wicking, machine washable, and contain 4-way stretch. In just one year, we have delivered more than 800 PICC line covers to patients around the country.
JB: How has Babson helped you make that happen?
JC: With support from Babson, PICCPerfect has gotten amazing mentors and resources and $5,000 in seed funding from Babson’s Blank Center. Opportunities like BETA mean we can share our accomplishments with the Babson community and, with the grand prize money, order more inventory and roll out kids’ sizes for our PICCed Up Kids line. We did the Summer Venture Program last summer, and we are currently in the Women Innovating Now (WIN) Lab!
JB: So what’s next for you?
EL: The next big step for PICCPerfect is introducing new colors and patterns, and introducing our kids’ line. We’re competing in competitions in the Boston area over the next month and are waiting to hear back about Mass Challenge for this summer.
JC: We also just found out we’ll be participating in the BETA finals this Wednesday here at Babson!
I feel lucky every day to go to a school that supports its students as well as Babson does. Student entrepreneurs are ubiquitous here at Babson, and the College does a lot to give them the resources they need to succeed with their ventures. From the Blank Center’s Summer Venture Accelerator to the WIN Lab, Babson provides amazing mentors and resources to students looking to make a difference by starting their own company, giving students the confidence to put their ideas into action. When student-entrepreneurs have ideas of how their business can change the world, Babson helps make it happen.
Be sure to check out our Blank Center if you’re interested in seeing more about what Babson offers its student-entrepreneurs! And if you’re interested in following along with PICCPerfect’s journey, you can follow them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, or visit www.piccperfect.com.