Prep’s 2nd Annual Shark Tank allows students to pitch products to local area business leaders


Daanish Bhatti

The idea of starting your own business is quite an anomaly for the average high school student. Mr Bhatti’s entrepreneurship class gives students an introduction to the intricacies of owning a businesses. One of the class’s main aspects is creating a product and presenting it to a panel of successful investors and entrepreneurs in the Erie area. This idea was derived from the mainstream TV show Shark Tank.
“I wanted to add a real life aspect to the class. This model gives students the ability to make a business with the potential of becoming invested,” Mr Bhatti said. These investment possibilities gives students even more incentive to provide an excellent product. Presentation skills are put to the test in order to add credibility to one’s business model.
Groups presented various products to the particular investing panel in the Prep library. Panelists included Bill Scholz, Owen McCormick, Adam Williams, Brian Slawin, Alex Brychowoski and Carl Nicolia. They listened intently to all of the proposals and gave feedback on ways to improve. Many were genuinely interested in the products, asking further questions about their capabilities in the market place.
The products included XoTic Cloting Line, GoFitness App, Porto-Poddy Charger, Dripless Coffee Mug, Lacrosse Solutions Redesigned Lacrosse Stick, and Kicker Pro. Each team used their personal knowledge and experiences when it came to making a product. Nate Fisher, a Prep lacrosse player, redesigned a lacrosse stick to help with passing and catching. His design was a more adapted version of the original sticks Native Americans used. It was clear that many of the panelists were intrigued with his creative design. Fisher commented, “It was a fun time putting my idea into action and presenting it to people who could help and give me advice.” He encourages more people to take the class and try Shark Tank out.
Another stand out product was Kicker Pro, a redesigned football with sensors that monitor kicking ability. This was made by seniors Adam Upperman, Anthony Lupo, and Alex Douds. Anthony Lupo used his knowledge of being a kicker on Prep’s football team to make an innovative product. Upperman stated, “This presentation went really well. It gave me a lot of knowledge and encouragement for any exhibition I give in the future.”
Overall, Prep’s second annual Shark Tank was a great success. Each presentation was professionally done, and impressive to each panelist. This rendition has more people excited for what the future of Prep’s “Shark Tank” holds.