Congratulations to the EQ Semifinalists!

Five alumni judges with entrepreneurial backgrounds awarded spots in MU’s EQ program to 10 teams after evaluating the top 15 applicants at the Nov. 18 pitch competition on campus. This year, more than 50 teams applied to be part of EQ at Mizzou. See who won the 2018 EQ fall pitch competition.

What’s Next?

After the semifinalists participate in an eight-week educational program, they advance to another pitch competition at Mizzou. The three winners from that competition will split $30,000 in awards and compete for an additional $30,000 at the University of Missouri System Pitch Competition. Mizzou students won first and third place overall in the 2019 UM System EQ finale.

Mizzou EQ Pitch Competition
Monday, March 16, 2020 – 3 p.m.
Leadership Auditorium, MU Student Center
Reception to follow
Judges: Kathleen Bruegenhemke, Chief Operations and Risk Officer, Hawthorn Bank; Brant Bukowsky, BS Education ’00, Co-Founder, Veterans United Home Loans; Stacey Button, President, Columbia Regional Economic Development Inc.; Robert Griggs, BS Ag, ’77, President of Trinity Products; Melinda McCubbin, Owner of Truman Wealth Advisors and Director of Equity Investments at Shelter Insurance; and James Whitt, Director Supplier Diversity Program Development for City of Columbia
Questions? Call 573-882-2073 or email

UM System EQ Pitch Competition Finale
Wednesday, April 8, 2020 – 2:30 p.m.
Hosted by Missouri S&T
Questions? Call 573-882-3087 or email
More details will be posted here as we have them.

Mizzou’s EQ Teams and Ventures, 2019-20

The students on the top nine semifinalist teams represent five MU colleges and schools and 10 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Although they have diverse backgrounds and interests, they all share an entrepreneurial mindset: Thinking creatively, pushing boundaries and actively taking measures to make their business ideas a reality.

Zach Cook

Zach Cook, MBA graduate student (Vesta: One-stop cold storage container for the e-food and beverage delivery industry)

Trent Esser and Hayden Seidel

Trent Esser, business management & Hayden Seidel, civil & environmental engineering (Printerior: Custom-made furniture from 3D recycled plastics)

Maxwell Fazekas

Maxwell Fazekas, electrical engineering graduate student (Max Fix: Economical cell phone repairs)

David Goddard

David Goddard, finance graduate student (Kimberling City Bait and Tackle: Guide service, gear and lures)

Daniel Hoffman

Daniel Hoffman, executive MBA student (Norah Health: Platform to increase patient satisfaction and payment reimbursements)

Drew Patel

Drew Patel, computer science (Pollinate: Blockchain login for package deliveries in developing countries)

Emily Housey

Emily Housey, journalism strategic communication (Housey Designs LLC: Customizable products and art for Generation Z)

Madison Read

Madison Read, graphic design (Doodle Bed: Creates art on white sheets for hospital patients to color with markers, which can reduce their anxiety and stress)

Vanessa Rameriz, and Daniel Serres, both majoring in political science and communications (Fresher Than U: Everyday items are canvases for the work of digital artists, beginning with a car air freshener)

MU alumni judges of the Nov. 18 competition, from left: Foster Honeck, BA ’15, chief of staff, Troutwine Ventures; Kelsey Raymond, BS BA, ’11, co-founder & CEO of Influence & Co.; Nickie Davis, BGS ’09, executive director of The District Downtown Columbia & owner of Muse Clothing; Jeremyah Grigery, BS BA ’12, director of digital marketing, Veterans United Home Loans & owner of Nostalgiaville USA; & Zach Beattie, BS BA ’14, CEO and founder of Off The Grid; co-founder of SafeTrek




About EQ

EQ provides workshops, tools and mentoring to help students from any degree program make their business ideas a reality. Participants have the opportunity to win up to $30,000 to jump-start their venture. Watch our two-minute video for more details.

Your Contact:
Dr. Greg Bier, EQ Director
1210c MU Student Center, Columbia, Missouri 65211
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